of joyful learning.
On September 10, 1951, Trinity School opened with a class of 20 four-year-olds in the basement of Trinity Presbyterian Church. Allison Williams, the then-minister of the church, and other community leaders established the School with the vision of providing a nurturing environment in which to challenge students after recognizing the need for a high-quality early childhood education program in Atlanta. Seventy years later, we continue to carry out that vision as one of the Southeast’s leading independent schools, providing an elementary education that is second to none. Trinity students flourish in a place that not only cherishes childhood, but also provides a strong academic and socialemotional foundation. Thank you for being a part of our journey.
While some things change, some things remain the same. In this case, a discovery of short vowel sounds using different writing surfaces. In the photo from the 1950s, the Trinity student and teacher use a pointer to note the vowels in each of the words on a chalkboard. In the current photo, First Grader Peyton examines the -ck short vowel spelling rule with Lead Teacher Rebecca Stewart by underlining letters in a sentence on the Clear Touch interactive display.
On the Cover Kindergartners Harriet and Connor share a laugh while spending time in the Trinity Garden. To support Trinity School, please contact Margaret Douglas, Director of Advancement 404-240-9446 | firstname.lastname@example.org trinityatl.org/give Please send address changes to email@example.com Comments? Contact the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org
Mission Statement Serving children age three through Sixth Grade, Trinity School creates a community of learners in a diverse and distinctly elementary-only environment, in which each child develops the knowledge, skills, and character to achieve his or her unique potential as a responsible, productive, and compassionate member of the School and greater community.
Non-Discriminatory Statement Trinity School does not discriminate based on race, color, gender, religion or creed, national or ethnic origin, sexual orientation, or family composition in the administration of our admission and educational policies, in the extension of financial assistance, or other schooladministered programs.
Program and Pedagogy Pillars Celebrating the present and preparing our students for the future within a nurturing and caring educational environment, we: • Cherish Childhood Provide joyful experiences that include play- and passion-based learning Ensure developmentally appropriate experiences Design experiences around what is important in the life of a child • Deepen Students’ Educational Experience Develop creative and critical thinking and questioning skills Value both process and product of learning Connect learning vertically, horizontally, cross-curricularly, and globally • Empower Students in Their Learning Foster a growth mindset Cultivate voice, choice, and self-reflection Promote leadership
So that our students: • Build Academic Foundation Establish proficiency in essential knowledge and skills Embrace diverse experiences of a well-rounded education • Develop Character Foundation Exhibit ethical skills, habits, and attitudes of empathy, integrity, and respect Demonstrate performance skills, habits, and attitudes of accountability, persistence, and resilience • Exhibit Continued Curiosity, Creativity, and Confidence Imagine, discover, and experiment independently and collaboratively Adapt to new situations and a changing world
Leadership Team Joe Marshall, Head of School Ken Bomar, Director of Finance Brad Brown, Director of Admissions and Enrollment Management Ira Dawson, Upper Elementary Division Head Margaret Douglas, Director of Advancement Sheree Du Preez, Early Elementary Division Head Nicole Fash, Director of Marketing and Communications Jill Gough, Director of Teaching and Learning Reginald Haley, Director of Operations Marsha Harris, Director of Curriculum Jeff Morrison, Director of Education Technology Ginny Perkinson, Assistant to the Head of School Kayleen Whitmer, Director of Extended Programs
2021–2022 Board of Trustees Bill Jordan, Chairman Matt Bartelt Catherine Humann Callaway ’97 Kristin Carothers Jason Chambers ’89 Elena Chang Erica Cummings Chris Gabriel Zenobia Godschalk Anne Hennessy Molly Jamieson Carrie Lanier Jenny Latz Tish McDonald Brand Morgan Melissa Moseley Street Nalley Jack Norton Charlie Ogburn David Overend ’86 Marcellus Parker Leslie Patterson Tina Roddenbery John Shepard ’68 Boynton Smith Farah Spainhour Ann Speer Stephanie Stephens Mary Watson Ellen Wiley Neal Williams ’72 6
Contents 8 Greetings from the Head of School 10 Contributing writers
14 New Board members offer fresh perspectives Our four new Trustees bring varied backgrounds and a strong belief in Trinity’s mission and vision to the Board.
18 Meet Sheree Du Preez, Trinity’s new Early Elementary Division Head With more than 30 years in education, Sheree Du Preez has held leadership roles at independent schools in the United States and overseas.
20 Meet Ira Dawson, Trinity’s new Upper Elementary Division Head Over his 18-year career in education, Ira Dawson has spent time at both independent and public schools as a teacher and an administrator.
22 Award winners demonstrate excellence in service The Academic Leadership Team celebrates excellence in service by presenting awards to 17 members of Trinity School’s faculty and staff.
29 Trinity faculty and staff take on new roles Six team members move into new roles this school year.
31 Faculty and Staff Milestones Help us celebrate the personal milestones of our faculty and staff, including two recent retirements.
Highlights 34 Trinity Tidbits
Read highlights from this past spring and summer at Trinity.
42 Trinity Traditions Enjoy a look at the recent traditions that reinforce Trinity’s identity, curriculum, and values.
48 Early Learners: Where Trinity adventures begin Trinity’s Early Learners program, which begins at age three, is full of joyful learning that is incredibly purposeful and rich in personal connections.
51 A journey is not always a
54 Celebrating 40 years of Spotlight on Art While Spotlight has evolved over 40 years, it has always united our community with the common goals of elevating artists and raising financial support for Trinity School. 56 Staff Story: Michelle Siegel Trinity’s Extended Programs Core Supervisor has a history of overcoming overwhelming obstacles. 60 A look back at Summer Camp Our 498 campers had so much fun during Trinity School Summer Camp 2021. Enjoy a peek inside some of the camps.
62 Catching up with Marcellus Rolle ’94 Marcellus shares how the Trinity community helped to inspire his lifelong love of learning and mold him into who he is today.
65 2021 high school graduates and college choices
66 Class of 2021: “I am leaving Trinity with...”
team members Learn more about the new members of the School’s faculty and staff.
straight line Read Third Grade Lead Teacher Matt Scott’s journey to becoming an educator and the lessons he learned along the way.
Margaret Douglas Nicole Fash Katie Hammett Joe Marshall Amanda Ore Katie Rosengren Matt Scott Leisy Stevenson Gale Weber
Stephanie Selman Michie Turpin
24 Welcome Trinity’s newest
Art Director and Design Cheryl Beverly, Ridge Creative, Inc.
Associate Editor Margaret Douglas
68 Alumni Events Recent alumni events are featured in this fun spread.
70 Class Notes
Flourish magazine is published biannually by the communications department at Trinity School and mailed to parents, alumni, grandparents, and friends of Trinity. 7
Head of School Joe Marshall helps Pre-K students find the runaway Gingerbread Man.
Dear Trinity Community, This school year marks a milestone anniversary for Trinity. On September 10, 1951, Trinity opened humbly with 20 preschoolers in the basement of Trinity Presbyterian Church. Today, in our 70th year, we sit on a beautiful, secluded 43-acre campus with 588 students, age three through Sixth Grade. How we’ve grown since 1951! Yet throughout our 70 years, the impetus for our founding has remained at the core of Trinity: to provide educational experiences that nurture and challenge elementary students. The true magic of Trinity is that we simultaneously cherish childhood as we prepare our students for the future by developing strong academic and character foundations. As I discussed with our faculty during our pre-planning meetings before the start of school, I have worked in schools that challenged but didn’t cherish and others that cherished but didn’t challenge. Trinity’s founding vision was to operate within the intersection of cherish and challenge, and I applaud this commitment as it is unique and necessary in education. As a student, teacher, coach, division head, and now head of school, I have always looked forward to the start of a new school year with its hope, optimism, and new beginnings. Yes, our foundation is built upon previous experiences and years, but a new year affords us the opportunity to set new goals and try new things. Trinity is a great school, and its success is built on never resting on its laurels or growing complacent. We continually strive to further hone and enhance the strong foundation that has been laid over the past 70 years.
As I read through the articles in this issue of Flourish, I saw a common theme: new beginnings and deep-rooted traditions. You will read about Spotlight on Art celebrating its 40th anniversary; our new employees, including our division heads; the middle school and colleges choices of our Classes of 2021 and 2015; exciting changes ahead for our campus; a journey to becoming a Trinity Teacher; and the starting point for most of our students, our Early Learners program. I always read Flourish with awe and admiration for the success of our students and alumni, the commitment and passion of our faculty and staff, the volunteerism of our parents, and the overall dedication to excellence from our entire community. Enjoy reading about our new beginnings and deep-rooted traditions in 2021! Sincerely,
Joseph P. Marshall Head of School @JosephPMarshall
Our Writers Margaret Douglas
Director of Advancement
Head of School
At Trinity since 2008
At Trinity since 2013
Bachelor of Arts in Spanish University of Georgia
Master of Science in English Education Hofstra University
Q: What brings you joy? A: Spending time with my family and friends, especially my two boys who are seven and four years old.
Bachelor of Arts in History Franklin and Marshall College
Katie Hammett Director of The Trinity Fund and Major Gifts At Trinity since 2019 Bachelor of Arts in English Literature Valdosta State University
Nicole Fash Director of Marketing and Communications At Trinity since 2016
Q: What are you happiest doing when you are not working? A: I enjoy reading, especially history and mysteries, and staying healthy and active.
Q: What advice would you give your 12-year-old self? A: I would tell my 12-year-old self that the journey to who you will eventually become will not be a straight and set path. But I would also tell her that regardless of the bumps in the road, she eventually finds her way and has a pretty blessed life. I would also tell her not to get bangs in middle school – big mistake.
Master of Arts in Media and Cultural Studies University of Sussex, Falmer, England
Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Spanish Shorter College
At Trinity since 2015
@trinityatl @trinityschool /trinityatl Q: What brings you joy? A: Being with my family and hearing the laughter of my two children.
Advancement Associate and Alumni Relations
Bachelor of Arts in Studio Arts The University of Mississippi Q: What are you happiest doing when you are not working? A: When I am not working, I like to spend time with my husband and our dog at the lake. Endless sunny days spent out on the boat are my favorite thing about warmer weather.
Matt Scott Third Grade Lead Teacher At Trinity since 2014 Master of Arts in Teaching Mercer University Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science Calvin College @MrScott3rdGrade
Katie Rosengren Associate Director of Advancement At Trinity since 2003
Q: What are you happiest doing when you are not working? A: I recently adopted a dog. Her name is Rosey, and my favorite thing to do when I get home is play with her and take her for a walk.
Gale Weber Early Learners Lead Teacher At Trinity since 2016 Master of Social Work Southern University at New Orleans Bachelor of Arts in Social Work Southeastern Louisiana University @TrinityBears Q: What brings you joy? A: Running, watching football, and watching my daughter and son live their best lives.
Bachelor of Arts in Economics, Washington and Lee University Q: What advice would you give your 12-year-old self? A: Try everything. Do not be afraid that you won’t be good at it or won’t like it, at least give it a try.
Leisy Stevenson Director of Spotlight on Art and Special Events At Trinity since 2018 Bachelor of Arts in Psychology Rhodes College @spotlightonart @spotlightonart /TrinitySpotlightOnArt Q: What brings you joy? A: It brings me joy to spend time with my family at the beach.
Bright, young minds
thrive here. Serving children age three through Sixth Grade, Trinity School has cherished childhood while preparing our students for the future since 1951. Our small class sizes, early childhood and elementary education experts, and state-of-the-art technology are just some of the reasons your child will flourish at Trinity, Atlanta’s only private elementary-only school! Applications for the 2022–23 school year will close on January 28. Open Houses are full, but visit us online to learn about ways to connect with our admissions team.
flourish Established 1951
News New Trustees Zenobia Godschalk, Stephanie Stephens, Jack Norton, and Kristin Carothers
New Board members offer fresh perspectives By Margaret Douglas, Director of Advancement Trinity’s Board of Trustees welcomes four new members this year. We thank each of them for their commitment to Trinity’s mission and vision for the future.
Zenobia Godschalk and her husband, Mark, have two sons who attend Trinity School. Chase is a member of this year’s Sixth Grade Leadership Class, and Finn is in Third Grade.
Clinical psychologist Kristin Carothers, PhD, began working with Trinity in 2019 when she gave a presentation to parents on developmental issues for children. An expert in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and behavioral intervention, she has provided trainings for Trinity Teachers on techniques to improve behaviors in the classroom and has engaged in some classroom observations as well.
“Trinity has provided a tremendous experience for both of our boys, who each have vastly different personalities and learning styles,” says Zenobia. “I am excited to work with and support the Leadership Team to help Trinity continue to be at the forefront of early education and to provide the foundation that our children need to be lifelong learners in a rapidly changing world.”
“I am really excited about serving on Trinity’s Board of Trustees because it will be my first time serving on a school board,” says Kristin. “I believe that Trinity has amazing students, teachers, and families, and I hope to be able to contribute to the Board in a way that continues to grow the School. I look forward to meeting parents and faculty members through my board membership and providing service to the community.”
Zenobia believes that Trinity’s elementary-only mission allows the School to be keenly focused on the needs of younger students, and the School and the faculty’s commitment to continuous improvement and learning sets a strong example and ensures that Trinity students benefit from the most current understanding of how to engage and motivate students.
Kristin believes that Trinity is a beautiful learning environment with teachers who care deeply about their students. She appreciates Trinity’s commitment to engaging in difficult discussions related to children’s social-emotional well-being. In addition to serving on Trinity’s Board of Trustees, Kristin currently sits on the board of Our Minds Matter, which is devoted to ending teen suicide. The organization is based in Washington, DC, and helps teams across the United States run student-led suicide prevention and social-emotional wellness groups at their high schools. A Chicago native, Kristin earned her Doctor of Philosophy as well as her Master of Arts in Clinical Child Psychology at DePaul University. She completed her pre-doctoral internship at Columbia University Medical Center in New York and received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Howard University in Washington, DC. In addition to running her private practice, Peachtree Integrated Psychology, Kristin is an assistant professor of psychiatry at Morehouse School of Medicine. A media consultant and expert contributor for Understood.org as a host of the YouTube Web Series, From Our Family to Yours, she has a five-year-old son who began Kindergarten this fall.
She says, “In addition to the faculty and staff, the highly engaged parent community at Trinity also reflects a diversity of backgrounds and beliefs, providing a wonderful opportunity for students and parents to learn about the experiences of others in a positive, nurturing environment.” An involved parent, Zenobia most recently served as TSPA Vice President, then President and previously co-chaired the community service and faculty and staff appreciation committees. In addition to her volunteer time at Trinity, Zenobia serves as a board member for The Next IT Girl. A graduate of Stanford University, Zenobia is the first person in her family to go to college and recognizes the tremendous value of a strong educational foundation. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Psychology with a minor in Industrial Engineering. Zenobia is a communications executive with more than 20 years of experience growing tech companies into multi-billion-dollar global brands. She serves as senior vice president of communications for Hedera Hashgraph, a next-generation distributed ledger (blockchain) company. She is also the founder and chairwoman of ZAG Communications, a leading PR and IR firm focused on cybersecurity. Prior to founding ZAG, Zenobia was a sell-side equity research analyst with Morgan Keegan, where she was awarded The Wall Street Journal’s #1 Software Analyst Team honor. She joined Morgan Keegan from Opsware (NASDAQ: OPSW), where she was part of the founding team. 15
Jack Norton and his husband, Clifton Askew, have two children who attend Trinity. Edward is a Sixth Grader, and William is a Fourth Grader.
Stephanie Stephens and her husband, Austin, have two children who attend Trinity. Katherine is in Fourth Grade, and T is in Second Grade.
Jack says, “Our oldest child is in the Sixth Grade Leadership Class this year, and watching him grow and mature has really made me appreciate all that our time at Trinity and a Trinity education have offered our family. I am excited to serve on the Board of Trustees to help show our appreciation.”
“I am thrilled for the opportunity to give my time and support to Trinity by serving on the Board of Trustees,” says Stephanie. “Trinity has already provided so much to my children and our family, and I look forward to being of assistance in promoting and expanding the School’s mission.”
Jack believes that the faculty and staff at Trinity are second to none. He says, “I love telling people about the 100 percent faculty and staff participation in The Trinity Fund each year. It is one of the many remarkable examples of their dedication to the entire Trinity community.”
Stephanie believes that Trinity’s greatest strength and most unique feature, is its sole focus on elementary education. Because of this, she believes that Trinity is able to provide the most comprehensive educational experiences for its students. Stephanie admits that she is always a bit envious of her children when they view the world through their “Trinity eyes,” which she describes as full of curiosity and wonder, making observations and connections that she never could have done at their ages.
At Trinity, Jack has been a Trinity Fund caller and has volunteered with Spotlight on Art. He co-leads Cub Scout Pack 212, which is not run by the School but Trinity students make up most of the pack’s members. He is also active at All Saints’ Episcopal Church, where he teaches Fourth and Fifth Grade Sunday School. Jack is senior manager of knowledge services at Deloitte, supporting the technology industry. Before joining Deloitte, he was director of digital services at The Coca-Cola Company, leading teams that designed and built web-based solutions to address business needs. Prior to joining CocaCola, he worked at The Home Depot for 16 years, serving in different roles before finishing his time there as the senior manager of web-based communications. Jack holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Language and Literature from Georgia State University.
She says, “It is amazing to see Katherine and T experience the world in this way, and I am so grateful to the Trinity faculty and staff for providing them with this gift.” Having served as a Room Parent for both of her children, a Media Center volunteer, a School Festival volunteer, and a Spotlight on Art Auction committee member, Stephanie has been an involved parent ever since Katherine began her Trinity journey. A native Atlantan, Stephanie graduated from The Lovett School, then from Vanderbilt University. Prior to becoming a stay-at-home parent, she worked in real estate for Dorsey Alston Realtors.
of joyful learning.
All of Trinity School’s resources are devoted to building strong, independent young minds. For 70 years, Trinity has fostered a joyful love of learning, in which each child develops the knowledge, skills, and character to achieve his or her unique potential as a responsible, productive, and compassionate member of the School and greater community. The Trinity Fund is the foundation of philanthropic support for Trinity students and everything they experience at Trinity. Gifts to this annual giving initiative are used to address the School’s immediate needs, such as curricular enhancements, classroom improvements, faculty salaries, technology, and need-based financial assistance.
The Trinity Fund gives the School the necessary resources to elevate the Trinity Experience from a great one to an exceptional one. Join us as we strive for 100 percent participation in The Trinity Fund. Your support and generosity ensure that our students will continue to flourish for years to come. To make your gift, please visit trinityatl.org/give or contact Katie Hammett, Director of The Trinity Fund and Major Gifts, at 404-760-4407 or email@example.com.
Meet Sheree Du Preez, Trinity’s new Early Elementary Division Head By Nicole Fash, Director of Marketing and Communications
Trinity’s new Early Elementary Division Head, Sheree Du Preez, knew she wanted to work in education since she was seven years old. Her First-Grade teacher was her source of motivation. “In First Grade, I had a teacher who loved and inspired me,” says Sheree. “She was funny and kind and wore clown suits to school every Friday. I wanted to be a teacher just like her. As I grew up, I worked for teachers after school, helping them grade papers and clean their classrooms. I loved everything about those experiences, and they solidified my desire to be a schoolteacher.” Sheree, who came to Trinity from Mount Pisgah Christian School, where she served as head of lower school, has worked in education for more than 30 years. She began her career teaching Second Grade at Cornerstone Academy in Atlanta and Fourth Grade at Grace Academy in Chattanooga. She went on to become Grace Academy’s director of gifted education, head of lower school (Pre-K– Fifth Grade), and assistant head of school and director of professional development. She has also held leadership roles at independent schools overseas, including assistant head of school and director of teaching and learning at Mirdif American School in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and head of school for the Pre-K–12 American International School in Accra, Ghana. In addition, for 11 years, Sheree partnered with a national team to design and develop 15 village schools and a teacher training school in Togo, West Africa. Her ideal environment for elementary-age students is, “One where every child feels loved and safe physically and emotionally, and one that is tailored to meet his or her individual learning needs. Also, the environment should be one in which every child feels a sense of acceptance and belonging regardless of learning, cultural, physical, or socioeconomic differences.” Sheree’s time leading divisions, schools, and initiatives in the United States as well as in other countries gives her a unique perspective on teaching, learning, and leadership and has broadened her love and understanding of others and other cultures. Her educational philosophy has developed over the years and has been shaped by her multidecade career path as well as her childhood experiences. An Atlanta native, Sheree grew up in Decatur, one of three children raised by a widowed mother.
“My father passed away suddenly when I was three years old,” she says. “My brother, sister, and I were raised by an incredible, hard-working mother. She taught us many things, most importantly, she taught us to value others, to value hard work, and to persevere through difficult circumstances. My mother made sure that our childhood was fun and happy. Our house was the place to be for other children in our neighborhood, and there was never a day that I did not feel secure and loved.” Sheree wanted to join the Trinity team because of the School’s view of education and its emphasis on cherishing childhood. Additionally, during the interview process, she said she noticed the camaraderie between teachers, administrators, and parents and wanted to be a part of that close community. Since starting at Trinity over the summer, Sheree’s priority has been to get to know the teachers, students, and families and begin building relationships. She also seeks to better understand the program and curriculum at Trinity before she begins looking at areas of growth for the Early Elementary Division. “I believe one of my strengths is my love for children and the ability to convey this love for them so that they see it and feel it,” she says. “I am kind, and I speak and listen to children on their level physically and emotionally. I want them to know that Trinity leaders and teachers have their very best interests at heart. Everything we do and every decision we make focus on them and their learning.” Sheree earned an Educational Specialist Degree in School Leadership from Gordon College, a Master of Education in School Administration and Instructional Leadership from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, and a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Bob Jones University. Since 2018, she has served on the board of Mirdif American School and is an accreditation team member for schools in Kenya, Ghana, Cameroon, Peru, and the U.S. She has led numerous professional development workshops, including sessions on 21st century leadership, student-centered curriculum and instruction, and creating an effective school culture. An avid reader, decorator, and baker, Sheree and her husband, Jan Du Preez, live in Lawrenceville. She and Jan have four children ranging in age from 27 to 13: JR Haley (spouse Autumn), Emma Van Der Staaj (spouse Michael), Jandre Du Preez, and Derik Du Preez. Sheree and Jan were excited to welcome their first grandchild, Lucas, in September.
Fun Facts about Sheree Du Preez Favorite food: Middle Eastern/Lebanese Favorite band: The Eagles Favorite movie: Sense and Sensibility Favorite TV show: The Crown Favorite book: The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy Favorite children’s book: The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett Favorite game: Yahtzee Favorite elementary teacher: ”Ms. Wicker, my First-Grade teacher, who was fun and loved me even though I was a precocious little girl.” Favorite elementary subject: Reading Sheree and Kindergartner Nora discuss how Cloud manages his emotions using the Kimochis social-emotional learning program.
Favorite school lunch: Grilled cheese sandwich and tomato basil soup On her bucket list: A trip to Alaska
Kindergartner Hadrian shares details of the book he is enjoying with Sheree.
Meet Ira Dawson, Trinity’s new Upper Elementary Division Head By Nicole Fash, Director of Marketing and Communications
Born and raised in College Park, Georgia, Ira Dawson, Trinity’s new Upper Elementary Division Head, grew up in a fun household. “My mom was the manager, promoter, sound-technician, and PR rep for our family,” he says. “She made sure we were in the right place at the right time. My father tried very hard to make sure he modeled what a good work ethic looked like.” Ira took that work ethic to heart and earned a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from Hampton University in Virginia, a Master of Education in Secondary Education with a concentration in Mathematics from Georgia State University, and a Master of Education in Educational Leadership with a concentration in Private School Leadership from Kennesaw State University. Over his 18-year career in education, he has spent time at both independent and public schools as a teacher and an administrator. He began his professional journey teaching algebra, geometry, and pre-calculus at Garinger High School in Charlotte, North Carolina. “After leaving Hampton, I wanted to utilize my mathematics background and love for helping others,” says Ira. “Education was a natural fit. In what other field can you help others achieve their goals, but also learn more about yourself?” Following his experience at Garinger High, Ira worked at The Walker School, where he taught math for seven years. Over the next decade, he spent time as the academic facilitator at Harding University High School in Charlotte, North Carolina, and dean (principal) of the academy at Atlanta Youth Academy. He joined Trinity from Walker, where he served as head of middle school after holding numerous leadership positions there, including assistant director of admissions, director of diversity, and dean of students. During his first year at Trinity, Ira looks forward to learning more about the School and connecting with the students, faculty and staff, and families.
“Trinity has such a rich history, and I am excited about learning about how it has risen to where it is today and what makes it so successful,” says Ira. “Trinity’s reputation precedes itself, and I have not been surprised at the consistent pursuit for excellence. My priorities are to provide an exceptional educational experience for our students and become acclimated to the Trinity culture.” As part of that exceptional experience, Ira believes that the ideal environment for Upper Elementary students supports curiosity and creativity while formally supporting students in exceeding expectations. His educational philosophy is based on the principles that authentic learning occurs when the accomplishment of learning is the end goal, and that transformational leadership creates a culture that nurtures healthy mindsets. For him, a collaborative educational environment in which transformational leaders and learners work toward a common mission and vision fosters trust and openness and allows for genuine and authentic relationships. “As Winnie the Pooh said, ‘You’re braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think,’” says Ira. “We want our students to feel valued and embraced as they stretch and challenge themselves. When children feel seen, heard, validated, and respected, their desire to engage and willingness to take on risk during the learning process increases dramatically. “Students tend to connect with teachers who model intellectual curiosity and encourage the same from them,” he continues. “I work hard to build meaningful connections with students by being present constantly and providing consistent support for them.” Ira’s article, “How Did I Get This Way? How Bad Is the Damage? How Do I Fix It?” was published in the Journal of Urban Mathematics Education in 2009, and he has led numerous professional development workshops on mathematics; diversity, equity, and inclusion; and leadership. He and his wife, Erica Johnson, PhD, have three children ranging in age from two to 14 years old: Cameron Dawson, David Dawson, and Ariyana Johnson. Ira loves to cook and enjoys coaching sports and working in the yard.
Ira gives Sixth Grader Ellie an elbow bump while filming the virtual Trinity Together Time in which the Sixth Grade Leadership Class announced this school year’s theme of “unique.”
Fun Facts about Ira Dawson Favorite food: Pancakes and Chinese food Favorite band: Earth, Wind, and Fire Favorite movie: Coming to America Favorite TV show: Game of Thrones Favorite book: Any Boxcar Children book Favorite children’s book: Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss Favorite game: Any sport and Hungry Hungry Hippos Secret talent: He can fall asleep anywhere, at any time. Favorite elementary teacher: “My Third-Grade teacher, who provided me opportunities to be a leader in class and explore my passions.” Favorite elementary subject: Math Favorite school lunch: Pizza On his bucket list: Live on the beach
Ira and Second Graders Carter and John Wyatt play Get the Pig to His Pen, a word study game about open versus closed syllables.
Front Row: Second Grade Lead Teacher Rachel Walker ’06, Fourth Grade Lead Teacher Hunter Branch, First Grade Lead Teacher Ali Avery, Extended Programs Core Supervisor Michelle Siegel, School Counselor Erica Pendleton, School Nurse Debbie Bright, Upper Elementary Art Teacher Pat Kerner Back Row: Database Manager Karen Johnson, Early Learners Lead Teacher Robin Martin, Early Elementary P.E. Teacher Laura English, Fourth Grade Associate Teacher Jackie Sears, Director of Outplacement Sarah Morgan Bonham, Maintenance Technician Will Hutchinson, First Grade Lead Teacher Julia Lee, Director of Spotlight on Art and Special Events Leisy Stevenson, Second Grade Associate Teacher Claire Snyder, Director of Marketing and Communications Nicole Fash
Award winners demonstrate excellence in service By Katie Rosengren, Associate Director of Advancement
At a special reception during employees’ back-to-school pre-planning in early August, the Academic Leadership Team (ALT) celebrated excellence in service by presenting awards to 17 esteemed members of Trinity School’s faculty and staff. These awards, facilitated by generous gifts to the School’s endowment over the years, honor passionate employees who demonstrate extraordinary dedication and commitment to Trinity. The Rollins Quest for Excellence grants, which include a stipend to be used for personal and professional growth and renewal, were made possible by a very generous gift from the Gary W. Rollins Foundation to recognize dedication and loyalty to Trinity. This year, Director of Outplacement Sarah Morgan Bonham, School Nurse Debbie Bright, Director of Marketing and Communications Nicole Fash, Maintenance Technician Will Hutchinson, Database Manager Karen Johnson, School Counselor Erica Pendleton, Extended Programs Core Supervisor Michelle Siegel, and Director of Spotlight on Art and Special Events Leisy Stevenson were honored with this prestigious award. First Grade Lead Teacher Ali Avery, Fourth Grade Lead Teacher Hunter Branch, Kindergarten Lead Teacher Julia Lee, and Second Grade Lead Teacher Rachel Walker ’06 received awards from The Childress Family Fund for Faculty Excellence this year. Established in 2013, The Childress Family Fund supports faculty members in their professional growth and development. Typically, Childress awards provide funds to pursue innovative programs to increase awareness, knowledge, and proficiency or insight that will be applied in the classroom and shared with Trinity colleagues. Because of continued restrictions on travel and professional development gatherings due to COVID-19, this year’s award winners received a well-deserved stipend to recognize their remarkable commitment to Trinity.
Early Learners Lead Teacher Robin Martin and Fourth Grade Associate Teacher Jackie Sears were honored with awards from The Hartman Family Fund for Faculty Excellence established by Trinity parent Nathan Hartman to provide stipends to teachers who go above and beyond to provide exceptional service to Trinity School. Director of Teaching and Learning Jill Gough says of Jackie, “This faculty-leader made it a mission to teach our community to enter into both safe and brave conversations. She reminds us to take responsibility for what we say and feel, to use empathetic listening, to be sensitive to differences, to ponder what we hear and feel, to examine our own assumptions and perceptions, to keep conversations confidential, and to trust ambiguity.” Early Elementary Physical Education Teacher Laura English and Upper Elementary Art Teacher Pat Kerner were honored at the reception for receiving grants from the Teacher Opportunity Fund. Established in 1994, this endowed fund was set up to honor excellence in teaching and typically provides awards to faculty for travel, exploration, and curriculum enhancement. This year, the Teacher Opportunity Fund winners received a stipend to celebrate their accomplishments in place of funds for travel. Lastly, Second Grade Associate Teacher Claire Snyder was recognized with the Stephen G. Kennedy Fund for Faculty Excellence award this year. Established to honor previous Head of School Stephen Kennedy’s 11 years of service to Trinity, this award and stipend honors a faculty member using innovative best practices to foster Information Age skills. Director of Teaching and Learning Jill Gough says of Claire, “This teacher meets all children where they are on their learning journey. She finds ways to both challenge and support students to deepen their learning. She also led professional learning for her teammates in order to assure consistency of instruction and content knowledge across classrooms.” Congratulations to this year’s award recipients!
Welcome Trinity’s newest team members By Nicole Fash, Director of Marketing and Communications
Join us in welcoming our newest faculty and staff members to the Trinity School community. Please enjoy learning more about these passionate and creative individuals.
Val Boone joins Team Trinity as a Media Specialist for the Early Elementary Division and works alongside Meredith Burris and Julie Griffith. A state-certified librarian, Val was a media specialist at The Academy of Scholars in Decatur prior to coming to Trinity. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in History with a minor in Geography from Kennesaw State University and is on track to finish a Master of Information with a concentration in School Librarianship from Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey, in December. We asked Val, why did you want to work at Trinity? Her response: “The values and mission of Trinity really speak to me. I love that we focus on building character and leadership in our kids. I really look forward to integrating the play-based learning into my own lessons. Trinity values make school an exciting place to look forward to for kids and teachers!”
Kyra Campbell joins us as a Third Grade Associate Teacher and works alongside Lead Teacher Matt Scott. Kyra has student teaching experience in Third Grade and previously served as a lead after-school teacher at Kid’s World Learning Center in Statesboro, Georgia. She has a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Georgia Southern University. We asked Kyra, why did you want to work in education? Her response: “I really enjoy working with kids and helping them learn new things. I enjoy the excitement they experience when students feel their success.”
Sarah Cascone, who has been an Extended Programs and substitute teacher at Trinity since February, now serves in the newly created Substitute Teacher and Field Trip Coordinator position. Prior to joining the Trinity team, Sarah was a public relations coordinator at Atlanta-based M-Squared Public Relations, a personal stylist at Fab’rik, and a front office administrator at the Athens YMCA. She earned a master’s degree in Public Relations from the University of Georgia and a bachelor’s degree in Journalism with an emphasis in Public Relations from the University of Mississippi. We asked Sarah, why did you want to work at Trinity? Her response: “I’ve known that Trinity is a special place for a while—three of my cousins attended Trinity and my aunt is a substitute teacher—but once I actually stepped on campus as a potential new hire, I immediately saw that the faculty and staff who work at Trinity School love where they work and are proud to be a part of this community. Experiencing that made me excited at the thought of working with such a special group of people who care deeply about every aspect of the child and his or her development. Here at Trinity, the faculty and staff really do strive to cherish childhood, and I could sense that in the first few minutes I was on campus.”
Litzy Delgado joins Trinity as a part-time Extended Programs Teacher. Currently a senior participating in the International Baccalaureate program at North Atlanta High School, she served as the high school’s Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) Battalion personnel officer (S-1) for a year and most recently worked as a team member at Chick-fil-A. Bilingual in English and Spanish, Litzy is passionate about helping others and has volunteered at the Children’s Hospital of Atlanta and Best Friend Animal Society. We asked Litzy, why did you want to work at Trinity? Her response: “I want to be a pediatrician and working at Trinity is a great way to get to know more about kids and connect with them.”
Robyn Denson, a Certified Public Accountant and Certified Fraud Examiner, joins the business office as Controller. With 15 years of accounting experience within non-profit organizations, she was an accounting manager at Georgia Aquarium prior to working at Trinity. She has also previously served as an audit manager at Warren Averett, where she led several seminars for the company’s annual Accounting Forum for Educational Institutions and Nonprofits. She has also served as an accountant at Georgia Museums/ Anverse and a staff accountant at Jones and Kolb. She spent the first seven years of her career as the office manager for Dr. Russell Anderson. Robyn has a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from Kennesaw State University. We asked Robyn, what are your passions outside the office? Her response: “I’m an avid gardener, a fairly new development over the last couple of years, and I love my two dogs, Lugnut and Ladybug. My husband and I ride motorcycles, and we love to travel, including a trip this summer to South Dakota, Yellowstone, and Grand Teton. Our favorite journey so far was to Japan during cherry blossom season.”
Laurice Drews joins Team Trinity as a Kindergarten Associate Teacher and works alongside Lead Teachers Andrea Barnett, Julia Lee, Mary Jacob Harris, and Brooke Kelly. She recently served as the co-director of Buford Presbyterian Weekday School and previously taught Kindergarten at Sugar Hill Elementary School and First Grade at West Jackson Primary School in Braselton, Georgia. She and her husband, Rod, have three daughters: a First and a Fourth Grader at Trinity and a Sixth Grader at Pace Academy. Laurice has a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education from Brenau University. We asked Laurice, why did you want to work at Trinity? Her response: “I wanted to work at Trinity School because it is a magical place that focuses on childhood. I love that children are allowed to be who they are and that mistakes as well as achievements are celebrated. I feel that the faculty and staff will push me to be the best educator that I can be. Plus, it seems like a super fun place to learn and grow!”
Reeves Holden joins Trinity as a Second Grade Associate Teacher and works alongside Lead Teacher Rachel Walker ’06. Prior to joining the Trinity team, Reeves was an online learning proctor and substitute teacher at The Schenck School and has student teaching experience in grades Pre-K– Sixth. A certified Orton-Gillingham Classroom Educator, Reeves has a Bachelor of Science in Early/ Elementary Special Education from Auburn University and is on track to finish her Master of Education in Special Education with a focus on dyslexia from the University of Georgia in December. We asked Reeves, what is your teaching philosophy? Reeves’s response: “My teaching philosophy is very simple: I want students to feel confident in the information they learn and how to apply it.”
Frances Holmes joins us as a Fifth Grade Associate Teacher and works alongside Lead Teachers Bridget Billups and Michaela Davida. Prior to joining the Trinity team, Frances was a substitute teacher at Atlanta Jewish Academy. Her background includes stints as a river guide and educator at Altamaha Riverkeeper and a lead camp counselor and kayaking and paddle board instructor and guide at Nature Adventure Outfitters. She has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting and Art History from Savannah College of Art and Design as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Art History from the University of Georgia. Frances attended Trinity for Pre-K and Kindergarten before her family moved to New York, where she attended The Nightingale Bamford School. After her family moved back to Atlanta, Frances graduated from The Lovett School and is also an alum of the National Outdoor Leadership School after spending a semester exploring the Amazon Basin in Brazil. We asked Frances, why did you want to work at Trinity? Her response: “Trinity feels like coming home! As a former Trinity student, I know how special and magical Trinity School truly is. I want to be a part of the narrative and help to shape young minds in a challenging world.”
Annie Jacobs joins us as a Third Grade Associate Teacher and works alongside Lead Teacher Caroline Dwight. Annie has student teaching experience in Kindergarten as well as Second, Third, and Fifth Grades. Over the past decade, she has babysat and served as a nanny for several families. Annie has a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education with an ESOL Endorsement from Georgia Southern University. We asked Annie, why did you want to work in education? Her response: “As someone with a mom as a teacher, I have always been immersed in the ‘teaching world.’ I have always had a love for children, and as I grew older the love for children transformed into wanting to make a difference in their lives. I am so grateful for my education and can name every elementary teacher I ever had. I hope to pay it forward and have an impact in my future students’ lives. I can’t imagine having any other career!”
Jennifer Jones joins Trinity as a Fourth Grade Associate Teacher and works alongside Lead Teacher Jen Overly. For seven years, she was a teacher assistant at Woodward Academy after serving as a substitute teacher for two years. Prior to her experience in education, Jennifer was a pharmaceutical sales representative for Pfizer in Atlanta as well as a vice president at Nations Bank (now Bank of America), where she worked within the treasury management, change management, and marketing departments. She has a Master of Business Administration in Finance from Clark Atlanta University and graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from Ohio University. We asked Jennifer, what is your educational philosophy? Her response: “My teaching philosophy is comprised of getting to know and connecting with students; providing a nurturing, inclusive, interactive, and inspiring environment; encouraging students to be the best they can be by keeping the bar raised high; instilling a love of learning in each student; and helping students build a solid academic foundation for future success.”
Janet Juarez joins the Trinity team as a part-time Extended Programs Teacher. A graduate of North Atlanta High School, she has worked in customer service over the last few years as a hostess at La Parilla, cashier at Chick-fil-A, and merchandise associate at TJ Maxx. Bilingual in English and Spanish, Janet has started her second year at North Georgia University, where she is studying criminal justice. We asked Janet, why did you want to work at Trinity? Her response: “My friend Briselda, who works in EP, told me about this job. When I came for my interview, I could tell this is a good place, a happy environment. I feel so welcomed and appreciated, and my co-workers are really understanding and supportive. The kids make my day; I love working here and don’t want to leave.”
Jessica Lyles joins us as an Early Learners Associate Teacher and works alongside Lead Teacher Pam Lauer and Associate Teacher Samantha Osby. For the last six years, Jessica was a lead teacher for three-year-old students at the Westminster Nursery. She also previously served as a lead preschool teacher at the Washington Street Child Development Center as well as Peachtree Road Lutheran Preschool for several years. At the beginning of her career, she was a clinical assistant in a psychological assessment office and held counseling internships at Laurel Heights Hospital and Hope Counseling Center, both in Atlanta. Jessica, who has led professional development workshops on socialemotional milestones and red flags as well as social-emotional learning in the classroom, earned a Master of Arts in Professional Counseling: Child and Adolescent Counseling from Richmont Graduate University in Atlanta and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Belhaven University in Jackson, Mississippi. A program representative with Georgia Researchers of Educational Psychology, Jessica is currently working toward her Master of Education in Applied Cognition and Development from the University of Georgia. We asked Jessica, what is your teaching philosophy? Her response: “I believe each child should be given genuine guidance and encouragement to think curiously, creatively, compassionately, critically, and collaboratively. In the words of Ms. Frizzle [the main protagonist of The Magic School Bus series], ‘Take chances, make mistakes, and get messy!’”
Kenneth Rosander joins the Trinity team as our new Extended Programs Curriculum Associate. He most recently served as the experience development manager at Kefi in Atlanta. Prior to that, Kenneth was the Kids Club coordinator at the Country Club of Landfall in Wilmington, North Carolina, for several years; a behavior interventionist/para-educator for New Hanover County Schools in North Carolina; and an activity director at Camp Royall for the Autism Society of North Carolina. He has led professional development on the fundamentals of working with children on the autism spectrum and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theater and Performance from the University of North Carolina Asheville. We asked Kenneth, why did you want to work at Trinity? His response: “Trinity’s commitment to approaching education through passion, play, and exploration is exactly the foundation I’ve used for the experiences, activities, and events I’ve created over the past 15 years of working with children.”
Melissa Vargas joins the Trinity team as a part-time Extended Programs Teacher. A graduate of Campbell High School in Smyrna, she has worked in customer service over the last few years as a hostess and a receptionist. Bilingual in English and Spanish, Melissa plans to begin college next semester. We asked Melissa, why did you want to work at Trinity? Her response: “I really enjoy being around little kids, getting to know their interests, and seeing them grow into becoming their own person. I have three younger siblings, and as I watched them grow, I helped guide them, which is what I want to do here.”
Jamesia “Jamie” Webster joins us as a Second Grade Associate Teacher and works alongside Lead Teacher Ellen Marbut. With more than a decade of experience in education, Jamie was the secretary/ clerk at Barksdale Elementary in Conyers, Georgia, prior to joining the Trinity team. She has also served as a paraprofessional at Barksdale, a lead teacher at The Goddard School Buckhead, and a long-term substitute teacher and summer camp coach at The Children’s School. Her passion for dance and education led Jamie to begin her own dance company, Entertain Me! Dance, and to teach dance at I Love Dance Atlanta. Jamie has a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Walden University in Minneapolis, Minnesota. We asked Jamie, what is your educational philosophy? Her response: “I believe that teaching is a gift that can be used to educate, empower, and help children discover their gifts and talents. To be an effective teacher, one must have a love, passion, and commitment for children and a desire to see them succeed. I always desire to provide a safe, loving, and creative atmosphere that allows kids to feel free to share their thoughts. Alongside setting high expectations and goals for students, I equip them with what they need to achieve a lifelong passion for learning.”
Trinity faculty and staff take on new roles By Nicole Fash, Director of Marketing and Communications
Learn more about our faculty and staff who transitioned into new roles or grade levels at Trinity this school year.
Andrea Barnett now serves as a Kindergarten Lead Teacher alongside Lead Teacher Julia Lee. A Kindergarten Associate Teacher at Trinity since 2019, Andrea previously taught Second Grade at Mt. Carmel Elementary in Douglasville, Georgia; Fourth Grade at Wolf Creek Elementary in Atlanta; and Fifth Grade at R.L. Norton Elementary in Snellville, Georgia. With more than 17 years’ experience in education, she has served as a lead mentor, a team lead, and an intervention lead. Andrea has a Master of Arts in Education with a Reading Specialist Certification from Regis University in Denver, Colorado; a Graduate Certificate in Elementary Education from Avila University in Kansas City, Missouri; and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Management from Avila University.
Holly Brookshire moved into a Pre-K Associate Teacher position after serving as an Early Learners Associate Teacher and Extended Programs Teacher since 2018. She works alongside Lead Teacher Claire Paul and Associate Teacher Kelly Williams. Holly served as a lead toddler teacher at the Westminster Nursery before coming to Trinity School. With 17 years of teaching experience, she has also served as a cubby camp counselor at Westminster; a lead toddler teacher at The Suzuki School in Atlanta; a toddler teacher at Saint John’s Child Care Center in Sandy Springs, Georgia; a teacher assistant at Mason Early Childhood Center in Mason, Ohio; a co-teacher at The Goddard School in Mason, Ohio; and a teacher assistant at Stepping Stones For Children in Berea, Kentucky. A certified Infant-Toddler Montessori Teacher with the American Montessori Society, Holly has a Bachelor of Arts in Health Science from Eastern Kentucky University.
Kate Burton transitioned to the First–Fourth Grade Science Teacher position after completing her role as Trinity’s Steam Integration Specialist, a three-year position that was funded through a grant focused on strategic innovation. Kate joined the Trinity team in August 2007 as a Fourth Grade Lead Teacher and later served as the Fourth Grade and Sixth Grade Science Teacher as well as a Sixth Grade Lead Teacher. Over her 25-year teaching career, she has held various teaching positions in grades 4–7 in Florida. She holds an Educational Specialist Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Kennesaw State University, a master’s degree in Elementary Math and Science from the University of South Florida in St. Petersburg, and a bachelor’s degree in English from Stetson University in Florida. She is close to completing a Doctor of Education in Teacher Leadership from Kennesaw State University.
Michaela Davida, who joined
Laura McRae now co-teaches
Trinity in August of 2018 as a Third Grade Associate Teacher, moved into a Fifth Grade Lead Teacher position after most recently serving as a Fifth Grade Associate Teacher. She teams with Associate Teacher Frances Holmes. Michaela, who teaches the Lacrosse and Field Hockey Extended Programs class, has previously served as a dance instructor and an afterschool tutor. She has a Master of Arts in Special Education and a Bachelor of Science in Education, both from The University of Alabama.
Fifth Grade math with Vicki Eyles after serving as a Fifth Grade Lead Teacher since 2014. She previously served as the Grade-Level Team Leader for Fifth Grade and joined the Trinity team in 2010 as a Fourth Grade Associate Teacher. Before working at Trinity, she was a presidential fellow and outdoor adventure director at Camp Twin Lakes in Rutledge, Georgia, and a member of the nursery staff at First United Methodist Church in Athens, Georgia. Laura has a Master of Arts in Teaching with a specialization in Early Childhood Education from Oglethorpe University and a Bachelor of Science in Family and Consumer Science from the University of Georgia.
Eman Srouji, who joined Trinity in August of 2019 as an Extended Programs Teacher and was promoted to the EP Curriculum Associate in March of 2020, now works as an Associate Teacher alongside Pre-K Lead Teacher Tiki Norris and Associate Teacher Leah Lenhardt. Eman previously worked as a ceramics instructor for Atlanta Clay Works and was also a private tutor and childcare provider. She has extensive art training and has a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Creative Writing from Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida.
Faculty and Staff Milestones Join us as we celebrate the personal milestones of Trinity School’s faculty and staff in this recurring feature.
At Trinity since 2016, First Grade Lead Teacher Christina Tankersley and her husband, Lake, welcomed Harrison Wayne Tankersley on January 27. Weighing six pounds, 13 ounces, Harrison joined proud big brother William.
First Grade Lead Teacher Abbie Shaw and her husband, Ben, welcomed their daughter, Mary Charlotte Shaw, on March 17. She joined proud big brother Will.
At Trinity since 2010, Fifth Grade Math Teacher Laura McRae and her husband, Douglas, welcomed their third child, Jay Roby McRae, on April 2. Jay is adored by his siblings, Wales and Lucy.
At Trinity since 2018, Fourth Grade Lead Teacher Laura Jannausch married Trevor Kaplan on June 11. The couple, who met in March 2019, held their wedding at St. Hugo of the Hills Parish in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, and their reception at the Colony Club in Detroit.
At Trinity since 2018, Director of Spotlight on Art and Special Events Leisy Ruddock married Dan Stevenson on June 12. The couple, who began dating in 2017, held their wedding and reception at The Kirtland Country Club in Willoughby, Ohio. 32
Amanda Vann, Advancement Associate and Alumni Relations, who joined the Trinity team in 2015, married Brooks Ore on June 5. The couple, who met in 2016, had their wedding and reception at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens.
After 25 years in education and 14 years at Trinity, Pre-K Associate Teacher Harvey Ross retired at the end of the 2020–21 school year. Harvey served as a substitute teacher at Trinity for four years before coming on full time in 2001. Over the last decade, she taught both Pre-K students and Early Learners and assisted with Second Grade art. She began her career as a speech and language pathologist, providing evaluation and remediation of various forms of communicative disabilities for children in Kindergarten–Eighth Grade for several years. She then spent time in the business world as a trade examiner and a legal assistant at The Coca-Cola Company. Prior to joining Trinity, Harvey was a Pre-K lead teacher at Peachtree Outreach Program (P.O.P.). A special thank you to Harvey, who demonstrated a strong dedication to her students and passion for her work.
Kindergarten Lead Teacher Megan Noe, who joined the Trinity team in 2016, married Ryan Mitchell on June 24. The couple held their wedding and reception at Old Edwards Inn in Highlands, North Carolina.
After 10 years as Trinity’s controller, Wynn Hickam retired at the end of July. A special thank you to Wynn, an invaluable member of the Business Office, who served the School with professional expertise, eternal positivity, and sincere humility. Prior to working at Trinity, she served as a senior tax manager at Windham Brannon, a Certified Public Accounting (CPA) and consulting firm, and began her career as an accountant at Babush, Neiman, Kornman & Johnson, LLP. A CPA, Wynn holds a Master of Taxation from Georgia State University and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Emory University.
Highlights Trinity Tidbits By Nicole Fash, Director of Marketing and Communications
Local healthcare workers, including some Trinity parents, volunteered their time to vaccinate several hundred individuals.
Kaley and Winnie and dozens of other Trinity parents (and employees) greeted and directed guests, checked people in, or administered vaccines on the day of the event.
Trinity hosts COVID-19 mass vaccination event Trinity School hosted a COVID-19 mass vaccination event on March 13, exactly one year after the last day of in-person learning during the 2019–20 school year, vaccinating nearly 700 individuals. What a fitting tribute to all that everyone had been through in the subsequent 365 days, for the School to unite as a community to take a critical step in moving beyond the pandemic. Partnering with Metro Atlanta Ambulance Service (MAAS), Trinity was able to offer COVID-19 vaccines to all its faculty and staff—including contracted EP teachers, FLIK dining team members, Cleanstar janitorial team members, and substitute teachers—as well as employees at several metro Atlanta independent schools. Trinity School is deeply grateful for Trinity parents Pete and Michelle Quinones, who own and operate MAAS and made the mass vaccination event possible. We are also grateful for the many parents and employees who volunteered their time on a Saturday to greet guests, check people in, administer vaccines, and more. 34
Fifth Graders prepare for Olympics during outdoor ed “trip” In late April, last year’s Fifth Graders enjoyed their annual spring outdoor education trip, which was reconceived as a full day of fun on-campus activities. Students made lasting memories during field games, shirt decorating, and chariot creating in preparation for their upcoming Olympics.
Then-Fifth Graders Ellie Wood, Eli Giampaolo, and Blake Patterson work on their chariot.
Students send “hugs” to grandparents and special friends Last school year, Trinity students crafted surprise “hugs” that were mailed to their grandparents or special friends in lieu of the School’s Grand Day event. The homemade “hugs” and accompanying notes were mailed in March. We hope the grandparent community felt the extra love being sent their way, especially during a time when most loved ones could not be together.
Then-Fourth Grader Mary Brady presents her completed “hug.”
Sixth Graders enjoy on-campus outdoor ed “trip” In April, members of last year’s Sixth Grade Leadership Class made the most of their annual spring outdoor education trip, which was reconceptualized as a full day of fun on-campus activities. The Class of 2021 participated in many traditional outdoor ed experiences, including team-building exercises, playing field games, and reading letters from their parents.
Members of last year’s Sixth Grade Leadership Class pose for a group photo in Discovery Woods.
Family STEAM Night goes virtual Last school year, STEAM Integration Specialist Kate Burton and Director of Curriculum Marsha Harris transformed the School’s second annual Family STEAM Night into a virtual collection of activities. Available from mid-March through the end of the 2020–21 school year, parents were able to access family STEAM challenges and read alouds on a choose-your-own STEAM activity board accessible through Trinity’s secure intranet, MyTrinity.
Trinity student accepted into the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth
and he joined the CTY Chess Club, playing four to five times each week.
This past spring, Trinity Fifth Grader Asher Easton was accepted into the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY), a nonprofit dedicated to identifying and developing the talents of academically advanced students in grades 2–12 around the world. CTY alumni include the founders of Google and Facebook. Asher’s standardized test scores in math and science qualified him for the program, and from now through high school, he can participate in a variety of intensive studies and academic explorations through CTY’s summer and online programs.
“I have been playing chess for a while and have taken classes at Trinity,” he says. “It’s fun and you learn a lot about strategy. Over the summer, I really enjoyed playing and interacting with players from around the world.”
Asher’s mom, Holli Hines Easton, says, “We were thrilled about Asher being accepted into the CTY program. Beyond his natural curiosity and love for learning, we attribute Trinity’s nurturing and academically thriving environment as being instrumental in what has shaped Asher as a learner. He races into school each day because he is so happy and eager to learn and flourish in Trinity’s engaging classes. This is the magic of Trinity; everyone is truly happy to be there, and the elementary-only education is unparalleled.”
“At one point, Asher was playing against another CTY Chess Club member who lives in India,” says Holli. “It was 9 AM in Atlanta and 9 PM in India, and these two young students were very excited and intrigued by the time difference and distance between them, yet how connected they felt through Chess Club. This is another powerful example of educational ‘connection’ through supplemental learning opportunities, whether they are in person or virtual.” Asher is now signed up for a three-month online cryptology course that combines mathematics, computer science, and electrical engineering. He has been looking forward to this course because, as he says, “I love science and math because they are fun to learn and will always be useful.”
Asher participated in CTY’s 2021 summer program, which was held online with in-person classes scheduled to resume in summer 2022. Chess is one of Asher’s passions,
Trinity hosts donation drive for StandUp for Kids - Atlanta
Community Service Co-Chairs Amber Lynn and Kim pose with representatives at StandUp for Kids - Atlanta alongside Trinity’s donated items.
Trinity is grateful for the community’s overwhelming support of last year’s reimagined Day of Service – a twoweek donation drive for StandUp for Kids - Atlanta. In May, the Trinity School Parents’ Association Community Service Co-Chairs Amber Lynn and Kim delivered thousands of non-perishable food items and personal care products to representatives of StandUp for Kids Atlanta. Trinity’s donations were put to immediate use, providing critically needed resources to youth in Atlanta who are experiencing homelessness and hardships beyond their control.
Kindergartners and First Graders enjoy time as Chick Masters Each spring, Kindergartners participate in Chick Masters. During a study on the life cycle of a chicken, students demonstrate responsibility and compassion as they care for the eggs, watch them hatch, and observe and nurture the young chicks. Since Kindergartners missed out on this special tradition in 2020 due to the onset of the pandemic, last school year’s First Graders also enjoyed being Chick Masters.
Then-Kindergartner Jacob and then-First Grader Kathryn enjoy cuddling with newly hatched chicks.
Families participate in virtual Fun Run/Walk Trinity families made tiger tracks during the School’s virtual Fun Run/Walk that ran from May 8–16. Participants were encouraged to run at least one mile sometime during that nine-day period and submit photos to the School that were shared with the community. Then-First Graders Adam and Nora run with their parents, Anil and Isha, during the Fun Run/Walk.
Kerry Coote earns master’s degree Over the summer, Upper Elementary Math Specialist Kerry Coote finished her master’s degree in Teaching Mathematics from Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Massachusetts. She is currently working on a Certificate in Instructional Leadership from Harvard. Also over the summer, Kerry presented “Developing Mathematical Understanding in Young Children” during a free online workshop geared primarily to homeschool families in Jamaica, her home country. At Trinity since 2012, she holds a bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education from Kennesaw State University and a bachelor’s degree in Electronics and Physics from the University of the West Indies. Now in her third year as the UED math specialist, Kerry was previously an associate teacher in Second and Third Grade and led Pi in the Sky Math Mornings at Trinity.
Becky Holden continues educational pursuits At Trinity since 2015, Early Elementary Math Specialist Becky Holden persists on her journey of continual learning and growth. This past summer, she received her Master of Arts in Teaching Mathematics from Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Massachusetts. In addition, she completed a ninehour workshop on Cognitively Guided Instruction (CGI) in the Early Education Classroom through the UCLA Mathematics Project. The course focused on the development of mathematical thinking in the early education classroom, specifically on three- to five-year-olds’ understanding of counting, problem solving, and spatial reasoning.
Dieon Franklin interns with KIPP DC This summer, part-time Extended Programs Teacher Dieon Franklin, who joined the Trinity team in 2020, served as an intern for KIPP DC’s Summer Program that provides free summer camps for students in grades PreK3–7 at four of the 18 KIPP DC campuses. KIPP, which stands for Knowledge Is Power Program, is a group of public charter schools designed to improve the educational opportunities available to low-income families. During his internship, Dieon assisted the summer programming team with application and enrollment record maintenance, answered families’ questions regarding summer programming, helped with planning and preparation throughout the duration of the camp program, researched evaluation types and survey techniques for families and staff, and developed a parent input questionnaire. Dieon, who has begun his senior year as a Middle and Secondary Education major with concentrations in English and history at Georgia State University, learned a lot during his internship with KIPP DC. He says, “This experience enforced the importance of effective communication and organizational skills for any job role. I saw firsthand the value of feedback and how it improves the structure of the programs and schools for all families. Also, there are so many moving parts behind the scenes of an organization, and that behind-the-scenes work is vital to ensure the success of the program for families.”
Jeff Morrison serves as adjunct professor at GSU At Trinity since 2011, Director of Education Technology Jeff Morrison, PhD, has served as an adjunct professor in Georgia State University’s department of Educational Policy Studies graduate program for the last four years. This past summer, Jeff taught the master’s level course Social and Cultural Foundations of Education.
Lauren Covington participates in Klingenstein Summer Institute Third Grade Lead Teacher Lauren Covington, who began working at Trinity in 2018, was accepted into the 2021 Class of the Klingenstein Summer Institute, after deferring her 2020 acceptance. This selective group of early career educators work with master mentor teachers over the course of several weeks in the summer to grow their craft in pedagogy, curriculum, instruction, and diversity, equity, and inclusion. It is a fully sponsored program out of the Klingenstein Center at Teachers College-Columbia. Over the summer, Lauren participated in two-and-a-half weeks of intense online learning in small groups facilitated by Columbia professors. She and other educators from around the globe dove deep into elementary curriculum and how to incorporate diversity, equity, and inclusion into the classroom. She enjoyed the experience and is excited about the ability to share resources with teachers from all over the world. Lauren, who has already received her Gifted In-Field Endorsement, is scheduled to complete her Master of Education in Educational Psychology (Gifted and Creative Education) from The University of Georgia in May 2022. She holds her Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education from UGA.
Exciting changes are underway as seen in the before and in-progress photos of the Early Childhood Outdoor Learning Center.
Construction in progress on new Early Childhood Outdoor Learning Center This year marks Trinity’s 70th anniversary, and the School carries on its dedication to continuous evaluation, reflection, and improvement that emanates from our founding principles. As part of that commitment, Trinity has been engaged in a campus master planning effort for the past few years. Intentionality and thoughtfulness define all that takes place at Trinity, and the planning process to ensure that the short-term campus improvement projects meet the School’s long-term strategic goals has been no exception. After developing a Campus Master Plan in 2018, school leaders conducted a fundraising feasibility study— gathering feedback through town halls, focus groups, individual conversations, and surveys to the full parent body—before developing a capital campaign plan that was initially projected to launch in March 2020. The global
events of the past year-and-a-half brought change to the timing and scope of the campaign’s projects, and the Board recently approved an updated campaign that will enable the School to better utilize and activate all aspects of its campus to strengthen students’ full Trinity Experience from Early Learners to Sixth Grade. Thanks to the early generosity of Trinity Trustees and members of the campaign leadership team, the School was able to begin construction on the initial piece of the campus master update, which centers around an Early Childhood Outdoor Learning Center, over the summer. Much work and progress has been made to date on the site of this new structure that will provide new interactive spaces for Trinity students to move, create, and imagine. The School is in the early phases of fundraising for this exciting campaign and more will be shared with the full Trinity community soon.
Reimagined Trinity School continues to reimagine the School’s beloved grade-level, division-wide, and school-wide traditions as the pandemic continues. This recurring section is dedicated to highlighting some of the many special events that our students look forward to every year.
Kindergarten Trip Around the World In January, Kindergarten students enjoyed a Trip Around the World, where they “traveled” around the globe and deepened their understanding of communities as they learned the history, geography, and culture of various countries.
101 Days of First Grade In February, First Graders celebrated the 101st day of school. Dressing up as one of the 101 Dalmatians, students developed numeracy through special games and activities designed around the number 101.
Pre-K Olympics In February, Pre-K students trained hard to participate in specially adapted sporting events during their very own Pre-K Olympics. Students had fun while learning about different countries and teamwork as they earned medals during events such as “bobsled” contests, tricycle and “horse” racing, hurdles, basketball, and soccer. The two-day event was captured on video and shared with the Trinity community.
Third Grade Living Museum Dressed up as their favorite historical figures, from activists to athletes, Third Graders were filmed confidently walking the red carpet during the Living Museum. Our students brought the personas of notable past and current individuals to life during this special annual tradition, which was shared with parents, faculty, and staff via video.
Celebration of Cultures In March, the entire school participated in Celebration of Cultures, a school-wide event that inspires students to explore the culture or traditions within their family and learn about the different heritages represented in our school. All students, faculty, and staff were encouraged to dress in attire that represents their values, beliefs, and traditions. Classroom activities focused on learning the meaning of culture and that we all have a story to share and we all belong to this wonderful community. Special guests participated virtually, presenting their backgrounds and cultures to classes online.
Fourth Grade Westward Expansion In March, Fourth Graders explored life in the 1800s as settlers were expanding into the American West. Students studied multiple perspectives and analyzed the different experiences, both positive and negative, of people living during that time period. In their culminating event, students enjoyed trail meals and collaborated to design and build homesteads in small groups.
Fifth Grade Olympics In April, Fifth Graders culminated their study of different countries through a fun and competitive outdoor Olympics event. From the opening ceremony and team events to individual events and an awards ceremony, our students pushed themselves and supported their classmates in various athletic competitions.
Sixth Grade Production Though it looked different in 2021, for the 43rd time, Sixth Graders performed an annual theatrical production. In lieu of an opera, students took the stage as characters in a performance of The True Story of Hey Diddle Diddle.
First Grade Zoo Exhibit
In February, First Graders wrapped up their month-long animal research project with the annual Zoo Exhibit. Students dressed up as their favorite animals and confidently shared their findings with classmates. In addition, the First Graders published their research in their very own nonfiction animal books.
A Trinity tradition since 1986, Field Day is an end-of-theyear celebration for Kindergarten through Sixth Grade students. Field Day has shifted from a one-day to a threeday event with Sportsmanship Awards for each grade presented at the end of each day. From tug-of-war to potato sack races, students enjoy these fun-filled days. All traditions occurred during the second half of the 2020–21 school year.
3 1. Fifth Grade Olympics 2. First Grade Zoo Exhibit 3. Fourth Grade Westward Expansion
4. Sixth Grade Production 5. Kindergarten Trip Around the World 6. Third Grade Living Museum 7. Fifth Grade Olympics 8. Celebration of Cultures 9. First Grade Zoo Exhibit
10. Field Day 11. Third Grade Living Museum 12. Kindergarten Trip Around the World 13. Pre-K Olympics 14. 101 Days of First Grade 15. Sixth Grade Production 16. Sixth Grade Production
Early Learner Kennedy holds her completed Creative Creature, a fun activity in which students choose from an assortment of silly attributes to create a unique little creature on a Play-Doh base. Every day, our Early Learners participate in activities like this to build their fine motor muscles. The Creative Creature activity is designed to help students achieve adequate strength to evolve from using a power grip (fist grip) to a precision grip, preparing them to become writers.
Gale Weber’s “Where Adventure Begins” bulletin board symbolizes the beginning of a new school year and her Early Learners’ unique, lifelong learning journey. The carpool lane and the students’ self-portraits exude happiness, unity, togetherness, self-awareness, and a sense of belonging.
Early Learners: Where Trinity adventures begin By Gale Weber, Early Learners Lead Teacher
If you are a Trinity parent, teacher, or staff member, chances are you’ve noticed the little guys and gals navigating the carpool lane every morning and afternoon, leisurely skipping or walking with their Trinity School blue bags. Do you ever wonder what goes on in the classrooms that serve our youngest learners? As a teacher of Early Learners, which begins at age three, my short answer is: a hefty amount of joyful learning that is incredibly intentional, purposeful, meaningful, and rich in personal connections. Recently, I asked my students, “How was P.E., guys?” They enthusiastically responded, “We played games the whole time we were there!” So, just how can a day filled with taking risks, meeting and exceeding expectations, growing, and stretching be perceived as fun by our students? For starters, an environment robust with building materials, dress-up clothes and props, books, and art supplies are tools that assist us in nurturing our students’ curiosity and imagination. The “power of pretend” is boundless. I’ve been asked, “Do you just play all day?” And my proud response is always, “Yes!” The acts of conducting a train, caring for
a baby, building a skyscraper, or baking a pie progress language skills, social-emotional skills, and thinking skills. These examples of play-based learning help to improve coping abilities and flexibility, establish confidence, and increase positive interactions with peers. It is during these exchanges with teachers and peers that the Early Learners team is steadily laying the foundations of literacy and numeracy. Like a baby learns to babble before he or she can talk, our approach to learning is to build the most solid foundations possible. The academic goal for our young learners is to develop early math skills, pre-literacy skills, and pre-writing skills long before our students ever learn to calculate, read, or write. In numeracy, our goal is to understand size, shape, and patterns and to promote an understanding of numbers and the quantities they represent. We provide opportunities throughout the day to practice counting, not just during math instruction. Grasping the concepts of more, less, and equal are big picture ideas that develop while the students increase their number awareness. Acting out number stories, playing counting games, and using literature to connect concepts with their experiences help us accomplish our math goals. A pre-reading foundation is a major goal we work toward accomplishing. Through our daily read alouds and independent read to self time, the students notice more details and increase their ability to recall and sequence a story’s events. They learn that the story has a beginning,
middle, and end, and they can make predictions about the story, characters, and settings. Turning each page in a book develops their orientation that reading follows a left to right and top to bottom progression. Our students begin to understand that letters make words, words make sentences, and sentences tell a story.
situation. They develop meaningful relationships with peers and teachers. We regularly say, “We work together; we play together; we don’t leave anyone out!” We work diligently every day to live up to those words in the classroom. Confident and independent, our students are building a strong social-emotional foundation.
Early Learners are first exposed to words comprising letters when they learn how to spell their first name. As they understand the connection between letters making words, they are excited to begin spelling the names of their friends and family members. Through continued practice, our students recognize the letters in their first and last name as well as other uppercase letters. We also introduce the connection between letters and their sounds. Phonemic awareness is the ability to hear, identify, and manipulate the sounds of language. With activities like singing silly songs and reading intentional literature, our students can hear the pattern in rhyming word pairs and progress toward generating their own.
To further strengthen connections across our grade level, all Early Learners and their teachers transform into pirates for Pirate Week. Our students have been enjoying this very special Trinity tradition for more than 18 years! Without a doubt, during Pirate Week, you cannot escape our corridor without being greeted with an emphatic, “Ahoy, matey!” from the students and teachers. To commemorate the week, which is a culmination of our Shapes unit of study, our students set out on a treasure hunt equipped with a map and handmade pirate hats, spy glasses, and hooks. Participating in traditions like Pirate Week is an important part of the Trinity Experience, and we intently spend the year watching, embracing, and supporting the special events enjoyed by the older grade levels. So, when it is finally their turn, our Early Learners transform into the most exceptional Olympians in Pre-K, Chick Masters in Kindergarten, and cast members in the Fifth Grade’s production of The Nutcracker!
Before children are physically capable of expressing themselves on paper, they must develop a plethora of pre-writing skills. A significant amount of time is spent developing our students’ hand and finger strength. Before putting pencil to paper, our Early Learners spend time learning that letters are composed of lines. We use many multi-sensory materials to practice letter formations. We use terminology from the Handwriting Without Tears (HWT) curriculum, like big line, little line, big curve, and little curve. Studies have shown that while focusing on academic knowledge early on is important, it will not ensure a child’s success in school. So, what will? In short, how children treat themselves and others will also impact their success in school. When our sweet young students arrive in August, they are accustomed to the norms and special attention they receive from their families, so teaching them how to operate as part of a new, larger school community is one of our goals for the year. We show them how to gain independence with self-help skills. We help them become aware of peer differences and show respect for the diversity around them. They learn to participate in large and small groups by listening to others, taking turns, and sharing. Learning to listen, following directions, and controlling emotions and behaviors support children’s readiness to learn. We model self-regulation and encourage the use of appropriate words to express feelings and needs. As the year progresses, our Early Learners practice working through peer conflict by listening to each other’s point of view and learning to compromise. They play cooperatively and move fluidly to new groups of friends, depending on the activity or
This connection of our Early Learners to the larger Trinity community is an integral component of our school’s culture. Our students quickly begin building relationships with teachers outside of our grade level and our individual classrooms due to our robust specials (art, media, music, physical education, science, and World Language) schedule. We are often stopped in the hallway by the adults in the building because they are drawn to our students’ size and level of cuteness, but, more importantly, we constantly receive praise for our straight, quiet lines as we journey throughout the building. Our school norms and values are proudly instilled at the earliest level. I cannot write about Trinity community connections without mentioning the special bond our Early Learners form with their Sixth-Grade buddies. Year after year, our buddies teach and share their knowledge, build meaningful relationships, and, most importantly, serve as exemplary role models and mentors. It is not uncommon for our Sixth Graders who began their Trinity journey as Early Learners to request to be paired with the class where all their fun and magic began. This very meaningful and intentional connection not only helps complete a student’s Trinity journey, but also lends great promise to a journey that is just beginning. Early Learners, where Trinity adventures begin.
A journey is not always a straight line By Matt Scott, Third Grade Lead Teacher
Growing up in a household with two parents in healthcare, I always knew that I was going to follow in their footsteps. The plan was clear and simple: attend the small college down the road from where I lived, pursue an undergraduate program in pre-physical therapy, and go to graduate school to become a physical therapist. Having been an athlete and being passionate about helping people, it was the perfect fit. I would be able to apply my understanding of training and performance to help others. Although my parents were thrilled with my choice of career path, they always encouraged me to pursue my passions. My intended straight-line path was certainly one they were proud of as I enrolled at Calvin College. It didn’t take long before my intended plans began to change slightly. Although I enjoyed learning about the human body, excelling in my anatomy and physiology class, I found no excitement in the rigorous challenges of chemistry and
physics. Within one week of animal biology my sophomore year, I was certain a degree in biology was not for me. I wanted to help people, and I thought physical therapy was still the right choice. Right then I decided to pursue a degree in exercise science instead of biology, and I found my niche. I was able to connect with people and use my knowledge of exercise and training. In my program, I spent time learning about teaching others. In one class, we learned about motor skills and how to build patterns of movement. We also had the opportunity to work with a faculty member to develop an exercise plan for his or her personal fitness goals, and I was energized about helping people learn and progress towards their personal goals. Upon graduating, I held off on applying for graduate school and accepted a job working in a hospital, assisting others in their rehabilitation from total joint replacements. Initially, I was able to make connections to my experience in my undergrad program. It wasn’t long before I found myself dissatisfied with my work, and I needed change. I was unsure of what that change was at the time, but I knew I needed to do something else. I began investigating a number of other opportunities without success. I also began to have conversations with Josh, one of my best friends from college, who was in seminary at Emory in Atlanta. Who better to help me discern my next step than a pastor in
Matt works with his students on grammar, using a mentor sentence to identify the different parts of speech.
Third Graders Zavien and Elsie decorate their writer’s notebooks with pictures to help them generate story ideas.
training? He and his wife were living in the Atlanta area, and after several months of conversations, I began to realize that the change I desired was going to push me farther outside my comfort zone.
the importance of having a strong work ethic, respect and empathy for others, and perseverance. These are just a few of the many things that make Trinity such a unique place for students, families, and teachers.
Eventually, I made a major job change and moved to Atlanta. While I felt confident in my decision and excited about the move, it was significant. To say I was anxious would be an understatement. After a year and a half of multiple jobs and plans that once again didn’t pan out, I took a risk and applied to be a substitute at Trinity. For a year, I filled in for the P.E. team while they were on outdoor ed trips and for anyone else who asked. It was a challenge unlike anything I had experienced before.
Upon graduating with my degree, I also made the transition from an associate teacher role to being a lead. I’m now entering my sixth year in Third Grade, and for those who have had a child pass through Third Grade, you know how much growth happens in those nine months. Students begin to engrain study habits, form new friendships, and start to build and connect their learning to foundational skills acquired in previous years. It is a milestone year in students’ lives, and I am excited every August to be a part of each child’s educational journey that year.
With my year of experience as a substitute teacher, I was fortunate to be offered a job as a Fourth-Grade associate teacher the following year, during which I gained a wealth of knowledge and experience from two incredible lead teachers, Brooke Ovorus and Kato Nims. I’m grateful to former Upper Elementary Division Head Maryellen Berry for offering me the opportunity to pursue my passion in education, and during my two years as an associate teacher, I was able to take advantage of many learning opportunities. I sought out feedback from Brooke and Kato to hone my craft as an educator and embraced as many new experiences as I could. Brooke and Kato modeled how to build strong relationships with students, navigate social and academic challenges in the classroom, and supported me in my role as an associate teacher. After my first year in the classroom, a year that I will never forget, I made my next life-changing decision, to pursue a master’s degree in education. One of the things I considered as I began my search for a program was the age range that I was going to study. If you asked me when I started in Fourth Grade, I would have said that I would never teach any grade lower than that, and I really thought seriously about a degree in physical education since I felt I had the most experience and confidence in that area. As I met with my advisor and spoke to other teachers, however, I realized that obtaining a degree in elementary education was the best fit and would provide the most opportunities. These are the most formative and important years in a child’s life. They begin to understand how they learn, what interests them, and what makes them unique. This is something that I’ve discovered in my eight years at Trinity that makes it such a special place. Trinity emphasizes the value of academic foundation, but character development of each child is of equal importance. Students certainly learn essential skills to read and write proficiently, and they develop a deep understanding of mathematical operations. They also learn
One of the highlights of the year in Third Grade is the Living Museum. Each year, the majority of questions on Sneak Peek Day from Second Grade students are about this event. They get excited to dress up, walk the red carpet, and be the star for a day. There are many things that make this a memorable event. As a teacher, I get to see how much growth occurs throughout this process as students research, write, and present what they have learned to their classmates, parents, and other students in the Trinity community. They foster curiosity, display creativity, and build their confidence when speaking in front of people. Throughout the course of each year, I am amazed and impressed by the amount of growth that I see in each child. Third Grade is a pivotal year in a child’s life, a year in which they truly begin to take ownership of their learning. They learn the importance of using technology responsibly, how to manage and keep track of nightly homework assignments, and they begin to advocate for themselves in the classroom. As a Third-Grade teacher, I’m grateful to be able to partner with parents in this critical year in their child’s educational journey. As I reflect on my own journey and experiences, I recognize the important role that each person plays along the way. Just as my path to teaching was not always linear, students also experience twists and turns along the way. I often emphasize the importance of the process of learning with my students, which is just as important, if not more, than the product. I hope to help empower each student who comes through my classroom door to pursue his or her own passions, develop good habits as a learner, and cherish being a child throughout the year. It is an honor and privilege to be a Third-Grade teacher at Trinity, and I love having the opportunity to build relationships with my students and help them learn and grow throughout the year they spend in my classroom.
Artist: AK Hardeman
Artist: Joe Turner
Artist: Dawn M. Trimble All images are from the Spotlight on Art Pop-Up Gallery at Neiman Marcus.
Visit www.SpotlightOnArt.com for more information and to sign up for Spotlight updates if you do not already receive communications from the School. Artist: Katherine Wirth
Celebrating 40 years of Spotlight on Art By Leisy Stevenson, Director of Spotlight on Art and Special Events It is hard to believe that this school year marks the 40th anniversary of Spotlight on Art. While Spotlight has evolved over the years, one thing has remained at the center since 1982, the way it unites our community with the common goals of elevating artists and raising financial support for Trinity School. Today, more than 100 parent volunteers work year-round to make this art event series a success. In recent years, Spotlight on Art has gained valuable partners such as Atlanta Decorative Arts Center (ADAC), Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles magazine, and Neiman Marcus. These mutually beneficial collaborations have helped propel Spotlight to where it is today, with our partners promoting events to their audiences as well as helping us secure new artists. This year, we kicked off Spotlight’s 40th season with our Pop-Up Gallery at Neiman Marcus at Lenox Square, which ran from October 2–24. We kept the event more intimate by limiting the number of participating artists, allowing us to truly “spotlight” them and their work. This year, we focused on securing new and diverse artists and the gallery showcased work from: AK Hardeman, Dawn M. Trimble, Joe Turner, and Katherine Wirth. We continued our series of events with the annual Spotlight on Art Pop-Up Shop during parent-teacher conferences in early November. The Pop-Up Shop, which featured jewelry, home décor, and other small gift items, was open to current Trinity families and was a great time to purchase holiday gifts for loved ones. The 40th anniversary celebration continues with the highly anticipated Artists Market, which will take place Monday, January 31–Saturday, February 5, 2022. Also, mark your calendars for special events during the Market: Opening Night will be held on Monday, January 31, from 6–9 PM and Cocktails and Canvases will be held on Friday, February 4, from 6–9 PM. The Artists Market is the best place in the Southeast to discover art from new, upcoming artists as well as established, well-known artists. Everyone is invited to stop in often as inventory changes daily. Also, to honor of our 40th anniversary, we are hosting a special luncheon on Wednesday, February 2, for previous chairs of Spotlight on Art. We look forward to reminiscing about the past 40 years! For the grand finale of this year’s Spotlight season, we will hold our annual Gala and Auction at the Atlanta History Center on Saturday, February 26. Open to Trinity parents, faculty, staff, and current and past members of the Board of Trustees and Alumni Board, the fun-filled evening will feature live and silent auctions, a seated dinner catered by Bold Catering and Design, and live music. This culminating celebration is a great way to bring the community together and raise a toast to another successful year. More details, including ticket information, will be sent to the Trinity community soon. We are excited to continue Spotlight on Art’s 40-year tradition of introducing both avid art collectors and casual buyers to well-known and emerging artists while raising money for Trinity School and are grateful for all the volunteers who make each Spotlight event a success!
Mark your calendars as we celebrate 40 years! Artists Market January 31–February 5, 2022 Featuring the work of more than 350 select artists, spanning all price points and styles, the Artists Market includes an ever-changing inventory in 6,000 square feet of gallery space. The Market averages daily sales of 1,000 pieces of artwork, and curated sections include contemporary, jewelry, realism, and whimsical.
Opening Night Celebration Monday, January 31 | 6–9 PM
Cocktails and Canvases Friday, February 4 | 6–9 PM Held at Trinity School, the Market and its signature evening events are open to the public with free parking and admission. Visit SpotlightOnArt.com to see daily market hours. The 40th anniversary luncheon is invitation only.
Gala and Auction February 26, 2022 Atlanta History Center 130 West Paces Ferry Road NW, Atlanta Parents, faculty, staff, and current and past members of the Board of Trustees and Alumni Board are invited to this special evening that is the culminating event of the Spotlight on Art 40th anniversary season. Tickets must be purchased in advance, and other members of the community can participate by bidding online for items. Visit SpotlightOnArt.com for more information.
Michelle watches Early Learner Grace put the finishing touches on her binoculars for the annual Extended Programs safari.
Staff Story: EP Core Supervisor Michelle Siegel By Nicole Fash, Director of Marketing and Communications Trinity’s Extended Programs Core Supervisor, Michelle Siegel, knows a thing or two about what it takes to make things happen and the power of perseverance. Her whole life, she has met challenges head on, rising above overwhelming obstacles and taking the lead when called to do so. She also thinks that being silly and having the opportunity to connect with children is the best part of her job. Michelle grew up in Boca Raton, Florida. She and her sister, who is only 20 months older, were raised by their dad. Their grandparents, Doris and Abraham, a.k.a, Boomy, also played an important role in their upbringing. “My dad was a police officer for almost 40 years, so he ran a pretty tight ship at home,” says Michelle. “Doris and Boomy were honestly the best grandparents on earth. They would let us dress them up; give them makeovers; and play doctor and operate on them, which included delivering babies, a.k.a., Cabbage Patch Kids. They came to all our class parties in elementary school, and all my classmates always used to want them to be their grandparents, too.” Michelle says that her family’s biggest pastime was to visit Disney. “Most of my family memories center around Disney,” she recalls. “My grandpa was even up for going on Splash Mountain when he was 72 years old, after undergoing double bypass surgery, just to help my sister overcome her fear of going on the ride.” Supported by her loving family, Michelle had a busy childhood and adolescence. On top of her schooling, she began training as a gymnast when she was three years old, and it quickly became her top extracurricular activity. At the age of five, Michelle was invited to join a competitive team and competed until she was nine, when a lack of funds put a hold on her training. Undeterred, she continued to hone her skills by tumbling at open gyms. When her family was in a financial position for Michelle to recommence her formal instruction, a hurricane destroyed her childhood gym. Two years later, when she was 14, the gym had been rebuilt and Michelle exchanged working as a summer camp counselor for her gymnastics tuition. That decision changed her entire career path, and she still coaches gymnastics to this day, subbing at Intown Tumbling and Yoga for Kids. “My coaching duties started with just summer camps but evolved into me teaching classes for kids ages 2–12,” says Michelle. “Not only did I enjoy what I did, but I honestly felt like I was good at it. I pushed myself to be patient with my gymnasts, but I also knew I was a coach who provided constructive criticism rather than an easy ‘great job’ when I knew they could do better. I feel like as a coach I’m tough but fair.”
While she continued to coach, Michelle stopped her gymnastics training in high school to pursue musical theater, spending hours after school each day in rehearsals. President of her school’s drama department and the thespian representative for her school district that was composed of more than 20 schools, Michelle performed in seven shows. While theater consumed Michelle’s high school career, when she was 17, her lifelong coach suddenly passed away of a brain aneurysm. She and the rest of the gymnasts stepped up to support his wife and keep the gym going. Through the summer after her senior year of college, Michelle took on the role of camp director, during which she organized summer camp participants’ daily activities and acted as master of ceremonies for camp events. “I realized then that I loved running camps, which is one of the reasons I love to do what I do now,” says Michelle. Finding much success as a gymnast, coach, and performer, Michelle was also a high academic achiever. Placed in enrichment (gifted) classes at the age of seven, she participated in advanced classes in middle school and AP and honors classes in high school. She maintained high academic honors in college, consistently landing on the dean’s list. After learning about all her pursuits, leadership roles, and achievements, it’s astounding to discover that through it all Michelle was chronically ill. Constantly fighting respiratory infections from the time she was a baby, Michelle would oftentimes end up in the hospital for days at a time. Misdiagnosed with asthma while she was in the Third Grade, the first time she learned about the word quarantine was when she was hospitalized for a week with RSV at the age of 15, then required to isolate at home for two weeks.
Michelle, far right, performed in the “Zombie Prom” musical at West Boca Raton High School in 2010.
It was during one of those respites at home that Michelle set her path toward social work.
Fun Facts about Michelle Siegel Favorite food: Cookie dough flautas Favorite musician: Ben Rector Secret talents: Performing various circus tricks: spin plates, devil sticks, Chinese yoyo, and more Words of wisdom for Trinity students: “Hold onto that child-like imagination. It’s truly a gift to be able to have the ability to think outside of the box we tend to end up in as we grow older.” Favorite movie and TV show: Holiday Inn (1942) and The Doctor Blake Mysteries Favorite book: Paper Towns by John Green On her bucket list: Learn ASL; perform on a Broadway stage; own her own sleepaway camp; receive a private acoustic concert from Ben Rector
Michelle is pictured with her dad and sister in a recent photo.
“When I was 13, I was home sick from school and the TV was on the Lifetime channel,” she says. “A movie came on called For the Love of a Child. It’s the true story of how two actresses in the 1950s went on to create the Childhelp organization. The story of children suffering abuse was horrifying but also awoke something in me that made me want to follow in their footsteps and be a part of something bigger than myself.” Alongside her pursuit of this passion, she continued to seek out answers from doctors to her health issues. The older she got, the more frustrated Michelle became that doctors treated her symptoms but did not search for a diagnosis. By the time she was in college, Michelle did not participate in any activities outside of her studies because of the frequency and severity of her illnesses. Each time she was sick, her dad would drop everything and drive three hours one way to take care of her or bring her home until she was well. After a particularly bad respiratory infection that landed Michelle in the ICU for two-and-a-half weeks during her sophomore year of college, her dad made the decision to retire early to help her full time. It was that same school year, when Michelle was 20 years old and on the cusp of medically withdrawing from college, that she finally received an answer. She had common variable immunodeficiency (CVID). Despite its name, CVID is a rare immune system disorder that causes individuals to be highly susceptible to illness as they have low levels of the serum immunoglobulins and antibodies that are required to fight off infections. With a diagnosis in hand, Michelle immediately began treatment, which consisted of intravenous immune globulin transfusions. By the time she was 22 and a senior in college, the transfusions were working, and her body was able to fight off infections. Michelle has not been hospitalized or seriously ill since then and continues to receive monthly transfusions. Michelle’s health journey has taught her a lot. “I learned that I can keep going and push through things even when they are hard,” she says. “It has taught me to listen to kids when they talk. I had a hard time describing what was wrong, but something was wrong and not enough people were listening. Kids need someone who listens to them. “Also, you don’t always know what people are going through,” she continues. “People would say to me, ‘You don’t look sick.’ I didn’t leave my house during treatments; no one saw me when I was on the floor sick.”
One of the highlights of Michelle’s career was serving as the ringmaster during one of the weekly summer circus shows on the Norwegian Cruise Line in 2016.
In spite of her illnesses and treatments, Michelle completed an internship with a Department of Children and Families case management organization in the post-adoption unit during the spring semester of her senior year in college.
She found herself working more with the parents instead of the children, and even though she believed that the work they were doing was important, she did not see herself in that kind of role moving forward. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in Orlando with a Bachelor of Social Work and a Child Welfare certification, Michelle had what she refers to as her “22-year life crisis.” “I went back home to Boca Raton and to coaching at my childhood gym,” she says. “It was there that I became very invested in running the camp and started to feel like recreational programming was a great route. I didn’t know where to begin though until a colleague suggested working on a cruise ship.” A few months later, Michelle found herself boarding a Norwegian Cruise Line ship in Hawaii to work as a youth counselor. Michelle had to almost immediately disembark as the cruise line required more time to set up the logistics necessary for her monthly transfusions. In a moment of serendipity, this delay provided Michelle with the opportunity to fulfill a lifelong dream to work at Disney, where she worked attractions, specifically One Man’s Dream at Hollywood Studios, helping out wherever she was needed. “I always wanted to work at Disney because we [her family] were such Disney people,” Michelle says. “I enjoyed the training I received, the onboarding, and learning their keys to success and how the company runs and their thought processes.” After a three-month stint at Disney, Michelle returned to the cruise ship. She and her colleagues ran all the children’s programming. Every day of the week was a different theme, and each week they welcomed a new group of children on board. Michelle really enjoyed working with like-minded people who were passionate about creating memorable experiences for children, and while the job was a great fit for her, ship life was not. She completed her six-month contract and returned to Orlando, where her dad was living at the time. Michelle began coaching part time at a nearby gym while she looked for other job opportunities and was promoted through the ranks quickly. After only eight months, she was offered the position of general manager. Over a one-year period, she managed a staff of 40–60 staff members, handled all parental concerns, and increased the overall number of active members to make her employer the largest gym in Florida.
Michelle accepted the role of assistant general manager at The Peach Pit and moved to Atlanta in September 2018. She continued to search for the right long-term position and found it at Trinity School. “I had actually been to the campus a few times as part of my previous job,” she says. “I knew some of the kids and had heard great things about the School. I saw a job posting for Extended Programs Core Supervisor. It’s not one of those job titles you look at and go, ‘Ooooh! That’s what I’ve been looking for!’ because it’s title is a little ambiguous unless you know a lot about Trinity School. After reading the job description, I realized it hit all the major points that I was looking for. Kayleen [Director of Extended Programs] really sold me on her vision of what she wanted Extended Programs to become, and I felt like it aligned with my passion for recreational programming. She wanted it to be more than just a place kids have to go, but rather a place they want to go.” In her two years at Trinity, Michelle has already made big enhancements to the after-school program. She has introduced weekly themes, from safari to Disney, for younger students and has helped strengthen the Core offerings for Trinity’s older students. Each Camp Day, which is offered during parent conferences, is focused on a different topic, from survivor to world domination. “My passion within recreational programming is creating moments that my students will go on to write about when they’re asked about their favorite childhood memories,” she says. “Over the years, I have learned from people who went all in, who didn’t care what other people thought, and who believed it was OK to look silly. I bring a lot of that to Trinity. Sometimes you just have to jump in, and it doesn’t matter as long as the kids are having a good time. And they are. Our students want to be at EP.” With her passion for recreational programming, Michelle would like to own her own sleepaway camp someday, but for now, she is enjoying her time at Trinity. “Trinity is such a special place,” she says. “I’ve heard people say it before, but getting to experience it every day is so different. The way all the teachers, counselors, learning specialists, Extended Programs staff, and others work together to better the child as a whole really sets Trinity apart from any other school I’ve been to. Also, here I am in my third school year at Trinity, and I couldn’t be happier.”
“The job was challenging, which is what I appreciated, but it didn’t allow me any type of work-life balance, says Michelle. “I was unhappy. I always knew I didn’t want to stay in Florida and finally just had to take a leap of faith, which is how I ended up in Atlanta.”
Super Scientists Camp
campers participating, the 2021 Trinity School Summer Camp was a huge hit! Let’s take a look at the fun that was had this past summer. Math Games and Puzzles with Mrs. Coote
Discover the Woods with Ms. Pam and Ms. Brooke
Wizard Training Camp
Choose your own adventure at Trinity School
Summer Camp 2022! Trinity School Summer Camp offers a variety of academic, specialty, and sports camps for children ages 4 to 13. From coding to Legos, art to science, choose your child’s summer adventure from our camps that will run Monday–Friday from June 6–July 1, 2022. Join us in Before-Camp Care, Activities in the Afternoon, and After-Camp Care to extend your summer fun to a full day, from 7:30 AM–4 PM! There will also be limited offerings available during a fifth session of summer camp from August 1–5, 2022. Trinity School Summer Camp is open to the public. Trinity parents will receive a sneak peek of the camps in December, and registration will open on January 27, 2022! www.trinityatl.org/summercamp
Please contact Kayleen Whitmer, Director of Extended Programs, at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Marcellus and his wife, Angela, visit the Christkindlmarkt on Marienplatz in Munich, Germany, in 2019.
Catching up with Marcellus Rolle ’94 By Katie Hammett, Director of The Trinity Fund and Major Gifts
We recently had the opportunity to catch up with Marcellus Rolle ’94, who shared with us how the Trinity community helped to inspire his lifelong love of learning and mold him into who he has become today. Tell us about your time at Trinity. What are some of your favorite Trinity memories? I started at Trinity School in 1987, when I was five years old. I still remember the first day of school, riding up the hill to the front entrance, seeing the school emerge from 62
the trees, filled with excitement and anticipation for what I would learn and do that day. My early years were shaped by teachers like Ms. Bitsy, Ms. McCutchen, and Ms. Vickers, and I will never forget the excitement for UGA football and the Atlanta Braves during Friday celebrations with Ms. Mo, and how Ms. Burris taught me how to type on a keyboard. However, it was Ms. Songster (Berry) and Ms. Shuford who truly shaped the person I am today. Collectively, they inspired me to learn, research, and challenge conventional thinking. They helped show me how every aspect of my education fit together and that, with the right approach, no task was unattainable. Where did you go when you left Trinity? What did you study? After graduating from Trinity in 1994, I went to Lovett. I then attended Tufts University in Boston, Massachusetts, where I majored in sociology with a concentration in communications and media studies and minored in French.
While at Tufts, I played Division 3 NCAA football for four years as the placekicker and still hold a few school and league records. In 2016, I graduated with a Master of Science in communications from Northwestern University, in Evanston, Illinois. What started you on your career path? After graduating from Tufts in 2004, I moved to Washington, DC. I initially wanted to work as a staffer for a member of Congress before possibly going to law school. Instead, I joined The Boeing Company shortly after arriving in DC, and my career as a communications professional began in Boeing’s government operations office. During an almost 14-year career at Boeing, I held several roles in which I developed strategic communication plans and messages for senior executives to educate and inform key stakeholders inside and outside of the Capital Beltway regarding the company’s business plans and objectives. When my first boss hired me, he told me he wanted me to be a litmus test for messaging. As many key influencers in the DC area are younger staffers, my age, education, and experience helped me to build the bridge between our communication efforts and the Hill, enabling those messages to have the most reach. It also didn’t hurt that I was working for the world’s largest aerospace company, and I still have a great affinity for aviation and aerospace. Please tell us about your current position. I am currently the head of the Communications and Public Diplomacy section at the Embassy of Switzerland in the United States of America. I joined the embassy in January of 2020, just nine weeks before the COVID-19 pandemic began. I am responsible for leading the embassy’s efforts to create and maintain sustained contact and dialogue on topics of common diplomatic interests with both Swiss and U.S audiences, while serving as the embassy’s spokesperson. I also support opportunities for Swiss and U.S. audiences to learn from each other’s experiences and explore new possibilities for cooperation in the fields of academia, advocacy, the arts, business, culture, development, education, human rights, international cooperation, the media, and science. I still get excited every day on my way to the embassy because I pass so much history during my commute. Driving past the U.S. Capital, the White House, the Washington Monument, and Lincoln Memorial is inspiring and a great mental warm-up to face the challenges of the day. Once I arrive at my office, I figuratively go to Switzerland every single day, without even getting on a plane; it’s simply incredible! Working for Switzerland to support the common interests related to diplomacy and culture between Switzerland and the U.S. is challenging, but always exciting. It also does not hurt that I get great cheese and chocolates!
How did Trinity help foster your career path? Trinity helped me understand the big picture and to see how multiple elements can come together to make something great. Trinity challenged me to be a well-rounded person, who, above all, knows how to learn and loves to do it. This love of learning was the foundation for my continued education and the work that I get to do every day. What advice would you give Trinity’s young graduates? Be curious, study hard, and never stop learning. Study not only science and math, but also learn a foreign language or two. In addition, learn about different cultures, food, and traditions, both domestically and globally. At the embassy, we have a tagline, “Culture is the gateway to diplomacy,” meaning you can be more impactful if you can communicate, connect, or find common ground with others while being a subject matter expert in your chosen field of study. Never discount what you have learned and how it might apply to your future. Appreciate the diversity of knowledge, culture, and people that surround you each day, because at some point, the exposure Trinity affords you will have a lasting impact. Lastly, have confidence and have fun! What do you enjoy doing outside of work? I enjoy spending time with Angela, my wife of four years, and traveling to new and exciting destinations. When my schedule allows, I enjoy playing golf with friends and participating in all the opportunities that Washington, DC, provides, whether that is attending concerts at the Kennedy Center or sporting events, visiting museums, or dining in one of the area’s many great restaurants. What are you most proud of? I have been so very blessed with wonderful, loving parents, teachers, colleagues, and friends. I have been blessed to have my wonderful wife, Angela, who supports me every day, and is my partner and best friend. I am proud of the value system that places like Trinity, Lovett, my church, and the Boy Scouts of America (Eagle Scout in 2000) have instilled in me. It is said in the Bible, “Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in their teaching; the one who exhorts, in their exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the ones who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.” I am proud of my gifts and strive to use them with mercy and grace. Is there anything you would like to add? I am truly grateful and proud to be a Trinity alum. Taking this walk down memory lane has provided me an opportunity to reflect on my educational and social foundation, and I remain honored to be a part of the Trinity community.
Allison Williams left a lasting legacy with the founding of Trinity School in 1951. Allison and his wife, Jo’s vision of Trinity serves as an inspiration that should encourage each of us to follow in their footsteps and create our own legacy at Trinity.
Make the gift of a lifetime Members of The Allison and Josephine Williams Legacy Society have included Trinity in their wills or estate plans. Their gifts provide financial support that is critical for the School’s future. Trinity relies on planned gifts to grow and flourish. Our physical campus, named professional development funds, and endowed scholarships all benefit from the generosity of The Allison and Josephine Williams Legacy Society members. Planned gifts continue our readiness for opportunities and challenges ahead and help Trinity remain a leading elementary-only institution. We are grateful for these thoughtful donors because their unique financial support ensures that the School will be prepared for the future and for future generations of Trinity students.
Contact Katie Hammett, 404-760-4407 or email@example.com, to speak further about including Trinity in your future plans or if they already include Trinity. Additional information can be found on Trinity’s Planned Giving website: http://trinityatl.plannedgiving.org
Planned Giving at Trinity It is easy to leave a lasting legacy at Trinity through a planned gift. • Wills and Trusts: make an important impact on Trinity that doesn’t cost anything during your lifetime and will only take effect after your other obligations are fulfilled • Life Insurance Policies: create a long-term gift that won’t draw funds from your estate • Retirement Plan: name Trinity as a beneficiary of your retirement plan, and leave less-taxed assets to family • Stock and Appreciated Assets: take advantage of appreciated securities without incurring a capital gains tax • Donor-Advised Fund: make Trinity the final beneficiary of your existing fund
2021 High School Graduates and
College Choices Emily Abercrombie, University of Georgia
Kaelan Kelly, Indiana University
Huston Alford, Wake Forest
Chiara Kremer, Boston College
I’Mani Barnes, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Matthew LePage, University of Missouri, Columbia
Anna Kathryn Baxter, Northeastern University
Bishop Lusink, Auburn University
Nicole Brooks, George Washington University
Emma Riley McGahan, Washington University in St. Louis
Holden Carson, School of Jazz and Contemporary Music at The New School
Mira Mohan, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Isabella Christman, University of British Columbia
Larson Normark, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Griffin Collier, Purdue University
Luke Ogbeni, Kennesaw State University
Christian Conte, University of Georgia
Dhilan Paramesh, Tufts University
Ava Douglass, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Cameron Philpott, Sewanee: The University of the South
Maggie Edwards, University of Georgia
Andrew Pinkston, Northwestern University
Chloe Emch, Washington University in St. Louis
Ted Pound, Georgia Institute of Technology
A.J. Evangelista, Vanderbilt University
Niles Rachal, Morgan State University
Charles Ferguson, Parson’s School of Design at
Elizabeth Reese, Georgia College and State University
The New School
Hayes Reifenberger, Auburn University
Charlotte Ficery, Southern Methodist University
Julia Rhee, Stanford University
Sophie Forte, University of Pennsylvania
Eva Romero, Boston University
Samantha Foshee, Rollins College
Sarah Rose, Parsons School of Design
Eric Francis, University of Alabama
Alden Schroeder, University of Georgia
Arin Francis, University of Michigan
Stone Sparkes, University of Miami
Emily Grace Fuller, Completing Phillips Exeter Academy Extension Year
Mary Locke Speed, Texas Christian University
Harrison Fuller, Miami University Ava Gavin, Georgia Institute of Technology Claire Genova, University of Virginia Anne Hanes, Syracuse University Ryan Hockstein, Georgia Institute of Technology Lilly Jordan, Washington and Lee University Jack Joyce, Southern Methodist University Conner Kanaly, The University of Texas at Austin
Andrew Nichols, Samford University
Sarah Street, Yale University Colin Suddath, University of Virginia Maddy Sudlow, Auburn University Cooper Taylor, Auburn University Charles Troutman, Washington University in St. Louis Olivia Ullmann, Washington and Lee University Jack Valentine, Furman University Kennedy Walker, Boston University Walker Weston, Clemson University
Iris Kase, University of Colorado Boulder
Class of 2021
I am leaving Trinity with...
The Westminster Schools a great education, friends, and leadership.
The Lovett School fun memories with my friends and teachers from the past years.
Pace Academy amazing friendships, great learning experiences, and fun memories. I will have friendships from Trinity that last forever, and I will always have a love for learning because of Trinity.
Marist School a great education, great friends, and a love of sports.
Woodward Academy good friendships and a love of reading.
Olivia Daniel The Westminster Schools a passion for creative writing and a fun and engaging education. I’ve made so many friendships and cherished so many experiences on my Trinity journey, and I wouldn’t change it for anything.
Woodward Academy strong friendships and good memories. I will leave with a good education.
The Lovett School great friends and fun memories. Lastly, great writing skills – 90 percent from Mr. Toth.
The Westminster Schools a great knowledge of what is to come. I have become a part of the Trinity community and the Trinity family. I leave with confidence, strength, and friends.
The Lovett School leadership! Leadership is important to me because I have been taught it for the last eight years, and Trinity is very good about teaching leadership.
The Westminster Schools great friendships and a love of learning.
The Westminster Schools the love and care that Trinity provides to everyone.
Atlanta International School memories of the fun outdoor ed trips in Fifth Grade. I will miss all my amazing teachers and friends. Last, I will miss walking into school every day and the wonderful teachers who say hi to me.
The Westminster Schools leadership skills. Whether it was practice with student council meetings, presentations, or group projects, I learned a lot. Trinity helped me grow into being a leader.
Gavin Harrison Woodward Academy memories of fun and friends.
Caroline Hill The Lovett School friends and a great education.
Simi Ingley The Westminster Schools amazing memories and tons of friends.
Natasha Johnson The Lovett School positivity, friendships, and amazing memories.
Owen Mattingly The Westminster Schools great memories of the Pre-K Olympics, Fifth Grade virtual Olympics, The Nutcracker, the Sixth-Grade production, and Wagon Train. I will remember these all my life and look back and smile.
Grace Mitchell Episcopal School of Jacksonville a love of experiments and many great friendships. I still remember making s’mores in Second Grade with Mrs. Kane, Wagon Train in Fourth, and my very first outdoor ed trip in Fifth. Being at Trinity for the past seven years has opened me up to all kinds of new possibilities.
Kate Winter The Galloway School the knowledge of how to be more social and academic skills, like long division.
Sibley Winter Woodward Academy reassurance that I will succeed anywhere I go because of all the great things that Trinity has taught me. I also leave with stronger friendships and an incredible amount of gratitude towards Trinity.
James Ramer The Westminster Schools a new family of friends and teachers, so really, I will never leave Trinity School.
Alumni Events Welcome to the Alumni Association Luncheon Before our Sixth Graders walk the stage for the graduation ceremony, they are welcomed into the Alumni Association with a luncheon. Held on May 7, the soon-to-be alums created care packages to send to other Trinity alums who were also about to begin a new chapter, their freshman year of college. After pizza and ice cream sundaes, the Alumni Association presented each member of the Class of 2021 with a copy of Dr. Seuss’s iconic book Oh, the Places You’ll Go! that included handwritten messages from members of Trinity’s faculty and staff.
Then-Sixth Graders Simi and Ann read special messages from Trinity’s faculty and staff.
Then-Sixth Graders Matthew, Riley, and Jack put together care packages.
Then-Sixth Grader Sarah pauses for a photo.
Class of 2015 Reunion The Class of 2015 and their parents were invited back to Trinity on May 27 for an evening of reminiscing and celebration as these alums graduated from high school. Everyone enjoyed a taco bar and beautiful weather on the Early Elementary Division playground as members of Trinity’s Class of 2015 received and read the letters they had written to themselves in Sixth Grade.
Trinity’s Class of 2015 gather for a group photo.
Stone Sparkes’ 15 and Emma Riley McGahan ’15 read letters as Ryan Hockstein ’15 and Julia Rhee ’15 look on.
Julia Rhee ’15, Ryan Hockstein ’15, and Eric Francis ’15 read letters written six years ago.
Class of 2014 Reunion After a one-year delay due to the pandemic, the Class of 2014 and their parents were invited to Trinity on August 1 for an evening to celebrate these alums who were about to embark on their sophomore year of college. Alums and their parents enjoyed looking through old yearbooks and catching up over dinner in the Allison Williams Activity Center (AWAC).
Members of the Class of 2014 gather for a group photo.
Class of 2014 members catch up with each other and Science Teacher Kate Burton and Head of School Joe Marshall.
Compiled By Amanda Ore, Advancement Associate and Alumni Relations
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Duncan Shepard ’99 and wife, Anna Shepard, welcomed baby boy William Findlay “Finn” Shepard on August 6. The family resides in Houston, Texas. Laura Parker Sykes ’00 and her husband, Sam Sykes II, welcomed son William “Will” Robert Sykes on April 8. He joins proud big brother Sam III, who is an Early Learner at Trinity.
Kathryn Boyd Crabtree ’02 and her husband, William Crabtree, welcomed their new baby boy, William Boyd Crabtree, on January 3.
Elizabeth Smith Edwards ’02 and her husband, Scott Edwards, welcomed their son, Paul Bailey Edwards, on May 27. Paul joins adoring big sister Elle.
Caitlin Paulette Namnoum ’03 recently accepted a role as a strategy manager at Apple and moved from New York City to the San Francisco Bay Area.
Andy Ogburn ’04 married Caroline Gibson in Houston, Texas, on March 20. Andy now works for Random Golf Club in Austin, Texas, and Caroline, a University of Virginia alum, is working toward her Master of Business Administration at University of Texas in Austin.
On June 25, Isabelle Babb ’08 was issued her “Wings of Gold,” entering into the ranks of U.S. Naval Aviation as a naval pilot. The “winging ceremony” took place at the Naval Air Station Kingsville in Texas, with Commander B.A. Lassen presiding. Isabelle has relocated to Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach, Virginia, joining Strike Fighter Squadron 106 as an aircraft carrier qualified F-18 Super Hornet pilot. When Isabelle is not flying, she spends time working out; cycling; painting; cooking; and playing with her puppy, Sasha, and two cats, Simba and Mars. Pictured: Philip Babb, Melissa Babb, Isabelle Babb ’08, Oliver Babb ’12.
Graham Huff ’09 graduated from Berklee College of Music in 2019 with a double major in composition as well as music production/ engineering. He moved to Atlanta and formed an indie rock band called Rocket Surgeon with some Berklee alumni living in Nashville. They recorded the album Flash Fiction, in which Graham composed, arranged, and produced. He plays guitar and does vocals on the album. The album was released in April 2020, so they had their release party on Zoom and were unable to tour. Since then, Graham has moved to Providence, Rhode Island; gotten engaged to Jaime Struminsky, with a wedding scheduled for June 2022; and accepted a full-time job at Berklee in their technology lab.
Visit www.trinityatl.org/alumni to submit Class Notes and update your contact information.
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11 Visit www.trinityatl.org/alumni to submit Class Notes and update your contact information.
Rankin Woley ’10 was named to the Senior CLASS Award First Team for baseball while playing at Auburn University. Rankin graduated summa cum laude, earning his bachelor’s degree in business administration, and is currently taking classes to prepare for medical school.
Christian Bradley ’11 received his Bachelor of Business Administration from Emory University and is now in Atlanta working for a private investment firm that provides debt to small- and mid-sized growing companies. Holden Carson ’15 and his band, The Manly Hero, have released five songs on iTunes and Spotify. Learn more about The Manly Hero on YouTube and Instagram @themanlyhero.
Chloe Emch ’15, a four-year letter winner at The Westminster Schools, completed high school as the volleyball career leader in assists with 2,772 as well as 581 digs and 167 aces. She earned all-area and all-state honors as well as all-state Player of the Year in 2020. She now plays volleyball for Washington University in St. Louis, where she is enrolled in the College of Arts and Sciences.
Ryan Hockstein ’15 and Emma Riley McGahan ’15 were inducted into the Cum Laude Society at The Westminster Schools after years of academic hard work.
Ryan Hockstein ’15 was elected class president for Westminster Boys both his junior and senior year and delivered the Westminster senior class graduation speech in the spring. Ryan lettered all four years in track and field, as well as two years in cross country. He served as captain of both the cross country and track and field teams, as well as receiving many awards academically. Ryan competed in the Track and Field State Championship and won first place with the Westminster boys team and individually took fifth place in the 300-meter hurdles. His assistant track coach was Paris Howland ’12. Most recently, Ryan served as an intern for the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI), creating two prototypes of sound devices—a microphone and headphones—using piezo electronics while developing an engineering curriculum for high school students at Fernbank Science Center.
Sarah Rose ’15 graduated from Think Global School, an international project-based traveling high school, where students live in up to four countries per year. She is pictured sixth from the left.
Sarah says, “Instead of going down the traditional route for my high school education, I chose to start a new adventure with Think Global School. During my time there, I was able to study in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Australia, and Mexico alongside some of my closest friends from all over the world. In BiH, I studied the complicated reconciliation process after the war by engaging with different religious and ethnic communities. In Australia, I learned about global social justice movements, interacted with local activists, and lived with an aboriginal community, all to better understand how to make a real impact in the world. In Mexico, we studied ancient Mayan societies, visited ruins, and got to say goodbye to each other before we went on our separate journeys. In all of these countries, and at home as well, I was fortunate enough to create projects that explored my own interests within the context of our group studies. I was able to investigate the intersections of race, class, and gender in global contexts; create projects to explore new artistic mediums; and develop my own photographic narratives. It was fantastic to be able to enrich my love for travel whilst creating my own education.”
Owen Armentrout ’16 received the Bausch and Lomb Honorary Science Award from the Science Department at Lovett. Every year since 1933, Bausch + Lomb honors high school juniors based on high achievement and rigor in science and math classes and positive contributions to their school and within the larger community.
Trinity Alums George Blaha ’16, Edward Blaha ’16, Joe Sapone ’17, Hunt Shurling ’16, and Connor Kanaly ’15 all participated in the 2021 GHSA Track and Field Championships. Last fall, Edward won the Boys 2A GHSA State Cross Country Individual Championship.
Ben Foster ’16 was awarded The Nancy Fraser Parker 11th Grade Citizenship Award at Lovett in the spring. This award was created to honor two rising seniors at Lovett, one male and one female, who exemplify citizenship, integrity, courage, spirit, wit, trust, pleasantness, and common sense.
Julia Jamieson ’16 received the Brown University Book Award from the English department at The Lovett School. This award is given to a junior who exhibits excellent verbal and written communication skills.
Stewart Key ’16 received The Lovett School’s 11th Grade Fine Arts Award. These awards are given to two outstanding Lovett students from each grade who excel in one or more areas of the arts. Stewart was recognized for her sincere passion for making art, dedication to her craft, and determination to create with integrity.
Amy Kight ’16 received the American Studies Institutes Term Paper Award at Lovett for the research paper she wrote during American Studies. This signature Lovett course is a joint effort between the English and History departments and all Lovett students take it during their junior year. Each of the four sets of teachers selects a paper from their class for consideration and then a panel selects the final paper to receive the award.
Everett Markwalter ’16 was selected as a finalist for the Georgia Governor’s Honors Program (GHP), a residential summer program for gifted and talented high school students who are rising juniors and seniors. Everett was selected for Mathematics. After several rounds of applications and interviews, Everett was one of 684 students selected to attend across a wide range of fields—including the arts, humanities, languages, sciences, engineering, and mathematics—and was one of 63 selected for math. Students take classes in their academic major six mornings a week and elective classes in the afternoons. Everett’s courses included topology, algebraic geometry, and the history of mathematics, and he completed a research project on iterated function systems. The program offers instruction that is significantly different from the typical high school classroom and that is designed to provide students with the academic, cultural, and social enrichment necessary to become the next generation of global critical thinkers, innovators, and leaders.
Hunt Shurling ’16 helped The Lovett School’s boys’ cross country team win state this past year. He finished 14th in the Boys 2A Georgia High School Association (GHSA) State Cross Country Championship. Hunt also participated in the 2021 GHSA Track and Field Championships, where he and his teammates won State in the Boys 2A 4 x 800-meter relay. Fielder Shurling ’82, Calder Shurling ‘19, and Stephanie Shurling came out to support Hunt Shurling ’16 at the cross country state meet.
Morgan Whittle ’16 received the 11th Grade Fine Arts Award from The Lovett School’s fine arts department and was inducted into the National Honor Society.
17 Visit www.trinityatl.org/alumni to submit Class Notes and update your contact information.
Visit www.trinityatl.org/alumni to submit Class Notes and update your contact information.
Noah Whittle ’16, a student at Lovett, was inducted into the National Honor Society last school year.
Julian Cassinelli ’18 and Ayanna Desai ’18 were chosen to be a part of the Make-A-Wish Georgia Youth Leadership Council program. They were selected out of 70 applicants from 20 different high schools across the state.
Julian Cassinelli ’18 is a member of the varsity Lacrosse and Swim team at The Lovett School. He is also a member of Young Men’s Service League and was awarded the Young Men’s Service League Superior Service Award for the 2020-21 school year. Julian also enjoyed coaching the Chastain Park Tidal Waves this past summer.
Ayanna Desai ’18 received The Lovett School’s Ninth Grade Religion Award. After taking Introduction to Religion, Ayanna distinguished herself as a student of mature academic ability and authentic individual courage.
Cody Ji ’18 competed at the summer national tournament in Philadelphia and won his second national champion title in the Y14 Men Sabre competition.
Preston Lusink ’18 received the 2021 Ninth Grade Male Athlete award from The Lovett School. Lovett’s athletic council grants this award to a male and a female from each grade who embody what a Lovett student-athlete should be; these student-athletes possess leadership qualities, character, and a commitment to scholarship that stands out among their peers. Alex McGruder ’18 received the William A. Parker, Sr. Student Improvement Award for the 2020-21 school year at The Westminster Schools.
Pierce Daniel ’19 is on The Principal’s List at The Lovett School and was nominated into The National Beta Club in March. This nomination is in recognition of Pierce’s exemplary character and academic achievement.
Hailey McGruder ’19 received the Eighth Grade Faculty Citizenship Award for the 2020-21 school year at The Westminster Schools.
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Calder Shurling ’19 is a cheerleader and a soccer player at The Lovett School. Pictured in the bottom row, second from the right.
Mackenna Stewart ’19 received The Lovett School’s Eighth Grade Leadership Award for being a fierce, compassionate leader. Her mom, Kelli, says, “Mackenna’s teachers and administrators from Trinity did an amazing job of shaping exactly who she is as a student and a person.” Trinity alumni from the Class of 2016 gathered to celebrate the start of their senior year at The Westminster Schools.
Front Row: Ishan Sheth, Margaret Drury, Camille Mitchell, Helen Symbas, Rachel Doman, Lauren Fernando Middle Row: Caroline Dixon, Helen Moseley, Mary Claire Anderson, Walton Newton, Robert Bernot, Preston Childress, Matthew Fernando, Jack Herakovich Back Row: Reyn Owen, Alex Latz, Frank Decker, Daniel Wood, Whitaker Swann, Norah Lascar, Sarah Kapasi
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